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The essential guide to the UK domestic furniture and furnishings trade #354 September 2018 |

Sealy – the world’s no.1 bed brand

ON A ROLL? The future of the bed-in-a-box

FN354_Pages.indd FrontCover354.indd 11

DATA SCIENTISTS Mammoth talks audience targeting

WE ARE FAMILY Three decades of Sweet Dreams

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“It’s a box stuffed with so much innovative tech and marketing glamour that even Pandora might have been tempted to take another peek” COMMENT


ho’d have thought a box could cause so much

excellent job of screaming their brands’ straightforward


stories from the rooftops.

Granted, it’s a box stuffed with so much

signs of wear. Eve’s CEO waved goodbye in July after

might have been tempted to take another peek. But – in

the brand’s H1 sales fell well short of expectations, the

much the same way Ikea made cabinets portable, hip and

brand blaming “volatile trading patterns” and “strategic

affordable – the success of the rolled mattress has taken

missteps” in its European strategy – but could it be

the industry by surprise, and fundamentally changed the

that the approach it shares with some other upstarts is

way we buy beds.

seriously flawed?

In a few short years, the upstart bed-in-a-box brands

“We are concerned that some of our highly-

and their white-label imitators have claimed over 17% of

unprofitable competitors are overselling and under-

the UK’s mattress sales by volume, according to the latest

delivering, and causing a bubble in the market,” opines

NBF figures. They’ve taken a US recipe – one-size-fits-

Max Laarmann, CEO of rival, Emma (see p24). He believes

all, easy returns, heavily advertised – and, one by one,

that committing huge sums of marketing spend to

made it palatable to the UK consumer.

courting a consumer who may take up to 10 years to make

And, emboldened by a growing faith in online shopping

a repeat purchase is incredibly short sighted, and could

(despite being Western Europe’s third-largest economy,

harm consumer perception of the entire movement should

the UK was by far its largest market for ecommerce sales

that bubble burst (see also financial consultant Anja

in 2017, says Forbes), we’ve devoured this trendy concept.

Meyer’s column on p94).

Not content with staying out in the digital playground,


Yet, for all the impact they’ve made, there are already

innovative tech and marketing glamour that even Pandora

It’s not the only criticism that’s been levelled at

these brands are now going in-store. Yes, Simba did it

these new kids on the block – could the increasingly

in partnership with John Lewis back in February 2016 –

keen pricing we’re seeing from newcomers be the start

but now they’re entering Bensons, Emma’s coming to

of a race to the bottom? – but it’s a reminder that

DFS, Eve to Dreams, and Leesa to West Elm (another US

both winners and losers will emerge from this fiercely


competitive arena.

So, what is it about these mattresses that has

The rest of the industry – even those who have

consumers so enraptured? Their cost? Comfort?

developed their own solutions – will just have to hope

Convenience? Perhaps, but I think that, more than

that consumer perception is not one of the victims.

anything, it’s because they’re easy to like, and simple to understand – in a world that can be anything but.

Because once that gets out of hand, it’s very hard to put it back in the box.

“The fact that these brands have stripped so much out of the marketplace shows that plenty of customers just don’t have the time to really consider what they’re buying,” Mammoth’s John Tuton told me last month (see p20). The time-starved among us are clearly susceptible to the notion of a simple solution, delivered without friction, and these disruptors (a term that’s already a bit outdated now they’ve become a new normal) have done an

Paul Farley Editor-in-chief T 01424 776101 E Twitter @FurnitureNewsED

ets FN354_Pages.indd 3

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4 | Contents



Partner Comment

Emma Mattress (24)

14 News Editor-in-chief Paul Farley 01424 776101 Twitter @FurnitureNewsED Sales and marketing director (Furniture News portfolio) Sam Horscroft 01424 776100 Twitter @FurnitureNewsAD Sales executive Caroline Littler 07861 231461 Production manager James Ash 01424 775304 Production assistant Mike Beales 01424 775304 Digital production assistant Nyall McCurrach 01424 775304 Copy administrator Steve Merrick 01424 776108

20 Interviews 32 Events 44 Resources 56


74 Manchester Furniture Show Review 94 Opinion 96

Beds & Bedroom


Dining Room

Riaz Ahmed, Sweet Dreams (56)

Proofreader Keith Fitz-Hugh Editorial director John Legg 01424 776104 Publisher Nigel Gearing Accounts Wendy Williams 01424 774982 Magazine subscriptions (UK-£65, Europe-£85, RoW-£95) Connect subscriptions (UK-£95) Claire Jones 07493 391962 Repro, print and distribution Stephens & George

Gearing Media Group Ltd 4 Red Barn Mews, High Street Battle, East Sussex TN33 0AG ISSN No: 1475 - 3731 © Gearing Media Group Ltd 2018 General information No part of this publication may be reproduced without the specific prior written agreement of the Publisher and may not be stored on any type of retrieval system. Furniture News/ Gearing Media Group Ltd accepts no responsibility for variations in colour reproduction. Special colours (Pantone etc) can be catered for with prior arrangement. Some elements of the editorial content in this publication are submitted by the trade, however, all efforts are made to ensure that the editorial remains true to fact and unbiased. Monies may have been accepted to offset the costs of colour reproduction. Gearing Media Group Ltd reserves the right to alter without prior notice any content other than customers’ advertisements. No correspondence will be entered into regarding altered or adjusted editorial content. The editor’s decision is final. All material submitted for inclusion in Furniture News is done so entirely at the owner’s risk and no responsibility is accepted for the safekeeping or return thereof.

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John Tuton, Mammoth (20)

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Contents | 5


The essential guide to the UK domestic furniture and furnishings trade #354 September 2018 |

Sealy – the world’s no.1 bed brand

ON A ROLL? The future of the bed-in-a-box

DATA SCIENTISTS Mammoth talks audience targeting

WE ARE FAMILY Three decades of Sweet Dreams

FrontCover354.indd 1

24/08/2018 13:03

Leading global bed brand British Design Shop (30)

Sealy UK ( introduces its Activsleep


Living Room

collection (p60)

134 Furnisher 139

Trade Services


148 Designer 152


Last Word

SATRA test procedures (64) Gary Baker explains what Furniture and Interiors

Manchester Furniture Show (74)

Skills Plus is bringing to training body FIESTA


Jan Turner introduces a treatise on technology from former Government advisor Simon Moores


Mark Williamson argues

The Furniture Trade Directory

that on-hold marketing is

The indispensible guide to UK suppliers and retailers,

essential to making a good

in print and online

first impression

FN354_Pages.indd 5

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18 11:24

Partner Comment | 7

A way forward able to access a wide selection of funded skills training.

For some time now, the furnishing industry has been aware

However, it is also an attractive system for levy-paying

of a developing skills gap. The 2015 Mind the Gap Report from the Furniture Industry Research Association and The Furniture

organisations wishing to employ entry-level apprentices, as it

Makers’ Company gave us irrefutable evidence of this.

allows them to outsource their apprenticeship management to obtain best value for money from their Apprentice Levy digital

However, the furniture and interiors industry isn’t the only


sector facing this crisis. Many others are too.

The furniture and interiors industry is one of the first sectors

While this is comforting in one respect, it also means we’ve got major competition, as there is a finite number of school and

to implement a national ATA strategy, which gives employers

college leavers and graduates each year, and every sector out there

in England unfettered access to an ATA, which in turn can

is vying for them.

provide training from approved providers listed on the Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers, plus recruitment and levy

To compound this issue further, our pool of potential recruits is

management services.

set to dwindle for the foreseeable future because the Government has begun cutting funding for arts- and technology-based subjects

Furniture and Interiors Skills Plus will be a pathway for employers to recruit and develop the skills of the next generation.

in favour of growing the economy and raising productivity by increasing the number of people studying Science, Technology,

Supporting businesses to take on apprentices is a huge step forward for the industry, but it’s only fighting the war on one

Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects.

front. We also need to promote the industry to schoolchildren early

“There is a finite number of school and college leavers and graduates each year, and every sector out there is vying for them”

enough so that they are aware of us as a dynamic and interesting sector to build a career in. To this end, FIESTA is in the early stages of organising a national awareness week for students from local schools to go on field trips to furnishing manufacturers and get an understanding of the industry and the companies in their local community. Anyone who wants to learn more about our partnership with the Apprenticeship Management Group should go to the FIESTA

It’s a cliche, but young people are the future, and for our sector

website, or visit us in the Education Zone at the W Exhibition,

to flourish we need fresh crops of talent continually applying for

taking place from 30th September to 3rd October at the NEC,

all manner of roles in the industry. There has never been a greater


need for a joined-up approach to engaging with schools and potential recruits. One of the ways that the new the Furniture and Interiors Education, Skills and Training Alliance (FIESTA) is addressing

Gary Baker is the chairman of

this has been to enter into an agreement with the Apprenticeship


Management Group to launch Furniture and Interiors Skills Plus,

a new trade organisation which

an initiative that will support furnishing businesses of all sizes to

aims to address current and future

recruit and manage apprentices.

skills needs by encouraging talented

In simple terms, Furniture and Interiors Skills Plus will offer

new workers to join the industry,

businesses a specialist apprentice recruitment service, Apprentice Training Agency (ATA) and Levy Management Company. This

and ensuring relevant training

service is ideal for smaller companies that are not currently

and qualifications are in place to

Apprenticeship Levy payers – ie, those with payrolls of £3m or

support them. The Furniture Makers’

less – as the ATA will qualify as a levy payer, so it can recruit and

Company, BFM and NBF are among

employ the apprentice on behalf of the host employer, and will be

its members.

Media Partners Furniture News enjoys partnerships with a range of key global and national institutions and exhibitions

Exclusive UK Member

Furniture News supports the aims and objectives of ACID (Anti Copying In Design) which is committed to fighting intellectual property theft

Official Media Partner

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14 | News

Celebrity to manufacture Cintique The JDP Group has transferred the

in computerised cutting machinery

manufacture of its Cintique brand to

at Celebrity, and the expansion of the

the Celebrity Motion Furniture site

development team.” Celebrity states that its factory is

in Huthwaite, Sutton-in-Ashfield,

QFC in administration Last month, Chris Pole and Mark Orton from KPMG Restructuring have been

Nottinghamshire. Wayne Hollis, MD for

sufficiently equipped to accommodate the

appointed joint administrators to

both upholstery brands, comments: “We’re

new production processes. Both companies

manufacturer Quality Furniture Company

keen to keep the Cintique branding and

share the same IT support and order


develop the range so Cintique has its own

systems, and Wayne says that any staff


changes due to the restructure will be

retailers across the UK, now employs

“kept to a minimum”.

approximately 241 people – a total of 30

“Both the Cintique and Celebrity teams

JDP Group, which also comprises

are excited about revitalising the Cintique

The business, which supplies major

redundancies had been made at the time

offering, and I’d like to emphasise that

Welbeck House and Arlo & Jacob, revealed

of writing – and operates from freehold

there are no plans to merge the two

significant losses last year, prompting it to

premises in Grantham. It continues to

brands. Cintique will also benefit from

discontinue Wade Upholstery’s business in

trade in the short term.

the investments that it has already made

the independent sector.

Chris Pole comments: “Like many operating in the retail sector at the

Mike Ashley acquires House of Fraser for £90m The purchase is the culmination of

Retail tycoon Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct

moment, the QFC has been facing challenging market conditions for some time. This, along with cost pressures, a weakened pound and a decline in

International acquired the business

a turbulent six months for the retailer,

consumer spending, has impacted trading

and assets of House of Fraser for a cash

which revealed plans to restructure

and has led the directors to take the

consideration of £90m, shortly after

through CVAs alongside new capital from

difficult decision to place the company

the department store chain went into

international retailer C.banner in May.

into administration.

administration on 10th August. The deal

This plan was challenged by a group of

includes all of the retailer’s 59 UK stores,

landlords in Scotland, while rapidly-falling

company unfortunately had to put a

brand and stock.

share prices prompted the would-be

number of staff on notice, as a result of

investor to withdraw its offer.

trading difficulties and cost pressures.

Mike Ashley, who also owns Flannels

Despite further discussions with

and a share in Debenhams of almost 30%,

“Prior to our appointment, the

Regrettably, in an effort to reduce costs, 30 redundancies have now been made.

had held an 11% share in House of Fraser

potential buyers – and the settlement of

since 2014. In an interview with the Sun,

the landlords’ legal challenge – no solvent

“Over the coming weeks, we remain

he promised that he would keep 80% of the

solution was found, and House of Fraser’s

focused on doing all we can to preserve as

retailer’s stores open, and planned to place

directors appointed individuals from Ernst

many jobs as possible, whilst we continue

more of its focus on luxury brands.

& Young LLP as administrators of each

to trade the business as a going concern.

business concerned.

I’d encourage any interested parties to

At the time of writing, House of Fraser’s

Subsequently, the chairman of the

website was down, its online orders cancelled and refunds offered, following

169-year-old retail business, Frank Slevin,

a payment dispute with its warehouse

has departed, and the plan to close 31

operator. The retailer’s 1000-plus suppliers

stores through CVAs has been shelved, yet

have been told that they will not receive any

around 12 stores could still be closed in the

money owed prior to the administration.


make contact as soon as possible.”

Ercol appoints COO Ercol Furniture has appointed Antony

Charity members to tackle Mont Ventoux

Maskrey as its director and COO. Antony has enjoyed

Members of The Furniture Makers’ Company are planning to cycle up France’s Mont

a varied career to

Ventoux this month to raise money for the charity.

date, having served

Nine people have signed up to the challenge, which is being organised by Hayden Davies,

as operations

master of The Furniture Makers’ Company, and is taking place on 13th September. The relay

director at Net-A-

challenge will see the team collectively cycle all three routes of the 6273ft mountain, with

Porter and Clarks.

each rider committing to tackle at least one of the ascents.

He joins ercol from Airwair International

The ride has raised £4000 in sponsorship of the team’s cycling jersey from Action

(Dr Marten’s), where he acted as global

around Bethlehem Children with Disability, Axminster Tools & Machinery, Blum, Burbidge

logistics director before being promoted

Kitchens, CD UK, Furniture News, Cabinet Maker, KI and Viasit.

to business transformation director.

Hayden Davies says: “The Furniture Makers’ team is aiming to ascend not one but all

He has also held senior positions at

three routes to the top in one day, cycling from dawn until dusk, in order to raise funds

Nike and Ricoh in Europe, and has an

for our charity. I hope to encourage each and every one of our members to sponsor the

MBA from the IESE Business School in

team, who are all not just funding their own costs but have bravely committed to raising an

Barcelona. He is currently completing a

additional £500 each.”

Masters in Research.

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24/08/2018 16:41

News | 15

Leathercare specialist ceases trading

Young professionals complete industry experience

The supplier of the Liquid Leather range of leathercare products, Gliptone Leathercare UK, owned by Star Brands, has ceased trading. A leading name in leathercare since 1972, when it started out refurbishing classic cars and carrying out general trim leather repairs to modern cars,

Josh Chadwick, Jonny Garth, Hayden Davies, Felicity Squires and Greg Young

Gliptone was the first UK company to use a water-based system for old leather restoration. A statement from the company reads: “As we are all aware times are challenging for retailers and it is with great sadness that we have decided to close the Gliptone side of the business. The decision was a hard one, but we decided to take this step before the business became less viable.”

Five sector aspirants have been given an

business development executive at

insight into the UK furnishing industry

Axminster Tools & Machinery; Billie Watts,

by completing The Furniture Makers’

business trainee at Blum; and Greg Young,

Company’s Young Professionals Industry

manufacturing graduate at Herman Miller.

Experience. Launched in 2014, the initiative brings together some of the brightest young talent

Professionals Industry Experience is an

in the industry to take part in an intensive

opportunity for companies to give future

three-week learning programme across all

leaders of the sector a unique, in-depth

areas of the industry supply chain.

insight into some of the leading companies

A total of 16 companies opened their doors

BFM appoints co-ordinator

Hayden Davies, master of The Furniture Makers’ Company, says: “The Young

to this year’s participants, who were: Josh

within the trade.” To support the professionals’ continued

Chadwick, graduate sales trainee at Herman

development, each will be paired with one of

Miller; Jonny Garth, junior management

the company’s members, who will act as a

apprentice at Silentnight; Felicity Squires,


The British Furniture Manufacturers (BFM) association has appointed Annie Porter as its new marketing and administration co-ordinator. Annie joins the association following its office move to Long Eaton in June, from an independent publisher in Nottingham. She will be working with the team to further raise the profile of the BFM. Annie says: “I’m looking forward to helping the BFM continue to grow and flourish and I am grateful for the opportunity to be part of an organisation with an important

Serene appoints new South-east agent Serene Furnishings has appointed Neil Facey as the South-east sales agent for its living division. Neil started his career with an AIS store in Watford, where he stayed for 10 years before moving on to his first representative job as area sales manager with Fraying Furniture. Leaving Fraying after 10 years, Neil has also worked with the likes of Millbrook, Sprung Slumber Beds, Jaybee, Birlea and Morris Group. “I’m excited to be joining the Serene sales team for the South-east area,” says Neil. “I have 30 years’ experience in the trade and I look forward to meeting all the Serene customers, new and old.” Jason Hollier continues to represent Serene’s beds division.

industry role to play in training, Government and international project work.”

Furniture exports rising, says BFM According to a review of the UK’s manufacturing performance in 2017 by the British Furniture Manufacturers (BFM) association, exports from traditional furniture sectors have improved by +18% since 2016. However, at the same time, 60% of all furniture in the UK is imported, with 45% of goods from more traditional furniture sectors manufactured abroad. British manufacturers now make just 6% of the wooden dining and living room furniture sold in the UK – but more than 80% of the wooden furniture for offices, shops and kitchens, together with mattress supports and spring mattresses, is made in the UK. The value of UK home-produced upholstered seats fell by -7.8% to under £1b, with importers gaining +3% more of the UK market.Jackie Bazeley, BFM MD, says: “Our review revealed some very interesting findings. While we saw an increase in exports we also saw that in several sectors the home market was still dominated by UK manufacturers.”

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24/08/2018 15:49

16 | News

Simba board appoints retail veteran

Next H1 sales lifted by warm weather

With a CV comprising roles at the likes of Asda, Royal Mail, Wagamama and

Next has revealed a strong H1, with

Entertainment One, Allan Leighton has been

sales ahead of expectations thanks to

appointed non-executive chair of Simba.

the warm weather in Q2. Full-price sales

He joins Henderson Global Investors,

were up +4.5% YoY, and online sales up

Numis Securities, entrepreneur Nigel Wray

+15.5%, driven by growth in the retailer’s

and Sir John Hegarty, among other high-

overseas and third-party brands business,

profile names as an investor, and takes over

along with more modest growth in the

from Tom Teichman, of business incubator

UK sales of Next branded stock. In-store

The Garage Soho, who has chaired Simba

sales declined -5.3%.

from launch and will continue his focus on

Despite this fillip, Next is maintaining

investing in early-stage companies.

its sales and profit guidance for the year,

Allan Leighton comments: “Across my

as it believes that some of these sales will

career, I have rarely seen growth, traction

have been pulled forward from August.

and a global brand built as quickly as the

Next says that the weekly sales

Simba team have achieved. I have long

patterns were volatile during the period,

believed that one of the key ingredients to business success is common sense and keeping things simple and focused. Simba has created an innovative business that

and any YoY comparisons will be From left: Simba executive vice-chairman James Cox; Allan Leighton; and Simba CEO Steve Reid

distorted by the movement of its endof-season sale in July. It also reports that cash flow remains strong, and that its

Simba has a nationwide partnership

plan to return £300m of surplus cash to

range of best-in-class sleep solutions,

with John Lewis, and the brand is also

shareholders by way of share buybacks,

disrupting, and with ambition to take brand

sold through Furniture Village, Ocado,

which it set out in January, has now been

ownership of, the growing sleep market.”

Amazon, Argos and over 100 AIS stores.


is sharply focused on delivering a narrow

Young Furniture Makers exhibition returns The Young Furniture Makers exhibition returns for its 12th edition

outstanding pieces of work in higher education; and The Timothy

this October. Around 80 up-and-coming young designers and makers

Oulton Best in Show Prize, an all-expenses-paid trip to Timothy

will present their designs at the exhibition – organised by The

Oulton’s manufacturing base in Hong Kong for the most outstanding

Furniture Makers’ Company – on Wednesday 10th October (1pm-

pieces of work in further education.

9pm) at Furniture Makers’ Hall and the Dutch Church in Austin Friars, London. Hayden Davies, master of The Furniture Makers’ Company, will welcome guests from across the sector at 7.00pm before a prizegiving ceremony. The awards include: Young Furniture Makers Bespoke Award,

Sponsored by Axminster Tools & Machinery, Harveys Furniture, Bensons for Beds and The Furniture Ombudsman, the exhibition was set up for schoolchildren, students and graduates to display their work to members of industry and potential employers. Hayden says: “The Young Furniture Makers exhibition is an extraordinary and unmissable celebration of talented young

sponsored by Festool; Young Furniture Makers Design Award,

designers, many of whom are still studying or in the early stages

sponsored by Crofts & Assinder; Young Furniture Makers Innovation

of their career. The show allows them to learn from the other

Award, sponsored by Knightsbridge; The Blum Best in Show Prize,

participating exhibitors but also gain insight from those already

an all-expenses-paid trip to Blum’s factory in Austria for the most

working in the design and furnishing industry.”

ScS achieves modest growth

Spinks Springs wins export award

ScS has reported overall growth of +1.3% for the 52 weeks ended

West Yorkshire manufacturer Spinks Springs, supplier of unique,

28th July 2018, a performance “in line with its expectations”.

micro pocket springs, has won The Furniture Makers’ Company’s

In its interim update on 21st March, the retailer reported LFL

third annual Export Award.

order intake growth for H1 of +2.2%, and highlighted the impact

Three businesses – Gosling Limited, Ocee International and

of the adverse weather conditions in the week commencing 25th

Spinks Springs – were shortlisted for the award, and attended a

February. It says that the continued softer trading environment,

judging day at Furniture Makers’ Hall, London, in July.

coupled with extremely warm weather in June and July, resulted

The Export Award’s judges were impressed how, through

in LFL order intake in H2 declining by -2.6%. For the full year, the

the development of an international strategy and continuing to

group therefore achieved an overall LFL order intake increase of

increase investment in the people within each new market, Spinks


Springs’ export business has grown by +500% since 2015, with

Its House of Fraser concessions contributed 7.2% of group order intake over the year. LFL orders fell by -1.9%.

FN354_Pages.indd 16

export sales in 2017/18 reaching £4.89m and now accounting for 17% of its sales.

24/08/2018 15:49



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Birkwood Unit 1 Ballinluig Pitlochry Perthshire PH9 0LG 01796 482506 Black & Blue Wood Products 5 Erw Wen North Cornelly Bridgend Mid Glamorgan CF33 4BW 07973 389479 Blackthorn Workshop North Piddle Lane Naunton Beauchamp Pershore Worcestershire WR10 2LH 01386 462208

Furniture Manufacturers & Suppliers – CABINETMAKERS

Andrew Manning Ltd Ascot Burrough Green Newmarket Suffolk CB8 9NE 01638 508047

Andrew Stanley Woodworking Ltd 7 Victoria Park Industrial Centre Rothbury Road London E9 5HD 02085 336199


Blackwood & Locke Woodchester Cottage Southfield Road Woodchester Stroud Gloucestershire GL5 5PA 01453 873725

Andy Mutch Cabinet Maker Ltd The Threshing Barn Paxford Chipping Campden Gloucestershire GL55 6XU 01386 593023 Anthony Nixon Furniture Birch Road Barnard Castle County Durham DL12 8JR 01833 690666 Anthony Rau 38 Fairfax Road London NW6 4HA 02077 229617

Listed alphabetically by county

Arcana Cheeks Farm Farnham Surrey GU10 5HD 00142 022812 Armitage Clegg & Co Ltd Back Lord Street Halifax West Yorkshire HX1 5AG 01422 363276 Arnett Cabinet Makers 94A Durham Road London SW20 0TL 02088 791037 AS Cabinets Ltd Unit 1 Bridge Street Park Village Wolverhampton West Midlands WV10 9DX 01902 861515 Ashcroft Woodworking Thompsons Yard Chipping Hill Witham Essex CM8 2DE 01376 514771 Ashwin Workshop The Printhouse 18 Ashwin Street London E8 3DL 02072 413825

Berwyn Phillips Unit 5 St James Street New Bradwell Milton Keynes Buckinghamshire MK13 0BN 01908 221885

B S Furniture Unit 15 New Place Framfield Road Framfield Uckfield East Sussex TN22 5EQ 01825 891230

Barlows Boards Ltd 8 Rushey Lane Rushey Lane Tyseley Birmingham West Midlands B11 2BL 01217 062067


Beverley Cabinet Maker Mecknoch Rothesay Isle Of Bute PA20 0QA 01700 500029

B W B Manufacturing Ltd Wiltshire Road Hull North Humberside HU4 6PA 01482 500508

Birkwood Unit 1 Ballinluig Pitlochry Perthshire PH9 0LG 01796 482506

Furniture Manufacturers & Suppliers

Barn & Brook Unit 2A Shipston Industrial Estate Darlingscote Road Shipston-On-Stour Warwickshire CV36 4PR 01608 666994 Batac Design & Construction Highway Farm Horsley Road Downside Cobham Surrey KT11 3JZ 01932 868691

Black & Blue Wood Products 5 Erw Wen North Cornelly Bridgend Mid Glamorgan CF33 4BW 07973 389479 Blackthorn Workshop North Piddle Lane Naunton Beauchamp Pershore Worcestershire WR10 2LH 01386 462208 Blackwood & Locke Woodchester Cottage Southfield Road Woodchester Stroud Gloucestershire GL5 5PA 01453 873725



Take a look for yourself – visit ...then perhaps you should think again! Yes, delivers all this for only £95 Antony Cammack 19 Cornwall Way Southport Merseyside PR8 3SG 01704 570275

Appletons Interiors Workshop 3 Main Street Barkby Leicester Leicestershire LE7 3QG 01162 640616 Arcadian Furniture 24B Hinton Hinton Chippenham Wiltshire SN14 8HJ 01179 372320

Axe Vale Furniture Townsend Beer Seaton Devon EX12 3LL 00129 723441

Beaver Furniture Beaver Lodge Sutton Thirsk North Yorkshire YO7 2PR 01845 597420

Ben Williams Furniture Maker Hayle Industrial Park Hayle Cornwall TR27 5JR 01736 759933

B G Allen Winllan House Llansantffraid Powys SY22 6TN 01691 828738

B J Brown Furniture & Cabinet Maker Bridge Farm Lower Road Britford Salisbury Wiltshire SP5 4DY 01722 413003

Bernard Polley Outbuildings The Stables Horseheath Cambridge Cambridgeshire CB21 4QN 01223 891983

Antony Cammack 19 Cornwall Way Southport Merseyside PR8 3SG 01704 570275

Boatman Furniture Unit 1B Park Farm Park Road Great Chesterford Saffron Walden Essex CB10 1RN 01799 530230

Appletons Interiors Workshop 3 Main Street Barkby Leicester Leicestershire LE7 3QG 01162 640616

Bob Hunter Wren Cabinet Makers Pear Tree House Thirlby Thirsk North Yorkshire YO7 2DJ 01845 597453

Arcadian Furniture 24B Hinton Hinton Chippenham Wiltshire SN14 8HJ 01179 372320

Axe Vale Furniture Townsend Beer Seaton Devon EX12 3LL 00129 723441 B G Allen Winllan House Llansantffraid Powys SY22 6TN 01691 828738

B J Brown Furniture & Cabinet Maker Bridge Farm Lower Road Britford Salisbury Wiltshire SP5 4DY 01722 413003

Beaver Furniture Beaver Lodge Sutton Thirsk North Yorkshire YO7 2PR 01845 597420

Ben Williams Furniture Maker Hayle Industrial Park Hayle Cornwall TR27 5JR 01736 759933 Bernard Polley Outbuildings The Stables Horseheath Cambridge Cambridgeshire CB21 4QN 01223 891983



Boatman Furniture Unit 1B Park Farm Park Road Great Chesterford Saffron Walden Essex CB10 1RN 01799 530230

Bob Hunter Wren Cabinet Makers Pear Tree House Thirlby Thirsk North Yorkshire YO7 2DJ 01845 597453




Children’s & Nursery


Dining Room




Living Room



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• The whole furniture industry Connect 1Yes, x annual Furnituredelivers Trade Directoryat your fingertips • The whole furniture industry

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all thistofor only £95 Access • ,Thousands of potential • Thousands of potential customers the perfect sales and marketing tool to customers – in print– and in print and online – ready and 1 x annual directory of 350 pages online – ready and waiting source buyers, suppliers and leads waiting for your enquiry 1 x 365/24/7 bespoke, responsive 4x

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FURNITURE NEWS 4pp insert AUG 2018.qxp_Layout 1 8/13/18 9:22 AM Page 1

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Sealy beds are handmade in the heart of Cumbria, on the edge of the Lake District. When you create something in such beautiful surroundings, it’s a constant reminder that you want things to stay that way. In the UK, we currently produce over 200 million tonnes of rubbish each year. This includes everything from commercial and industrial to household waste but only a percentage of this is recovered – the rest is sent to landfill. The impact in dumping everything into landfill areas is evident; air pollution, ground water pollution, soil and land pollution, landfill fires, financial costs and of course, health implications. So what does ‘Zero to Landfill’ actually mean? The ultimate aim of this philosophy is to prevent any waste material produced within an organisation going to landfill, which in turn offers a more sustainable route to resourcing for future generations. At Sealy, we have been making positive steps to change that over the past decade. Ten years ago only 15% of the waste produced in the production of our beds was either recycled or sent to energy recovery. Today, we are Zero to Landfill from site. Our goal is to make our nation ‘Deeper Sleepers.’ We believe that, along with our beds containing state of the art technology and unsurpassed comfort, the knowledge that your bed has been manufactured under a Zero to Landfill policy will help you rest a little easier.

FN354_Pages.indd 19

24/08/2018 15:49


lessons What does the customer want? For retailers, suppliers and manufacturers, that’s the million-dollar question – and, thanks to modern technology’s ability to harvest and analyse consumer data in increasingly sophisticated ways, the answer is clearer than ever. Paul Farley speaks to Mammoth’s founder John Tuton about the potential – and pitfalls – of personalisation in marketing …

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Interview | 21

“As ecommerce uptake grows and customer loyalty generally declines, this kind of approach will become essential to the sustainability of a retail business, and the brands they represent” Some 52.4% of the world’s population will

accordingly – yet the behaviour of today’s

be accessing the internet by 2020, and

consumer is much more complex than it

there will be 2.9 billion social media users,

was once believed to be, and it has become

estimates online database Statista. Countless

increasingly apparent that it’s impossible to

interactions means countless opportunities

accurately identify what they want based on

to capture, compare and interrogate user

that metric alone.

data, and better understand people’s behaviour, desires and frustrations. The Cambridge Analytica scandal may

“They’re internet-savvy tech-adopters,

have laid bare Facebook’s privacy protocols,

they’re fashionable, they drive a hard

but it hasn’t stopped the vast majority of UK

bargain … in short, they’re behaving very

users (around half of the population) from

similarly to what we’ve come to expect from

logging onto the social network each day

younger audiences.”

and sharing information about themselves – explicitly or inadvertently. And that type of information is extremely

Mammoth’s answer is to evaluate customers based on a host of sociodemographic characteristics – such as

valuable to the marketing companies which

gender, education level, income, technology

specialise in helping businesses target their

adoption timeframes, favoured newspapers

advertising more effectively.

and location – as well as age. Doing so has

Just ask John Tuton, who founded the

enabled it to segregate its audience into six

Mammoth comfort and mattress brand

key groups (cohorts), each of which is then

10 years ago after suffering a rugby injury

split into five or six sub-groups.

which left him immobile and unable to sit

“Traditional buying behaviours are

or sleep properly. Drawing on his healthcare

changing fast,” says John, “so we’ve had to

background, John went on to develop his

combine our own expertise with established

own mattress and cushion filling – Medical

metrics to get a clearer picture of our

Grade Foam – which responds instantly to


body shape and regulates temperature so users don’t get too hot or cold.. Today, Mammoth’s mattress, bedding

It’s a far deeper framework than John ever intended to create – at the outset, he’d only wanted to identify two or three

and seating products are sold through more

key cohorts on which to focus Mammoth’s

than 500 stockists in the UK, while the

marketing activities. But taking this path

brand utilises its sports and health industry

has also enabled Mammoth to plug into the

affiliations – with the likes of the Chartered

latest outbound marketing systems – “they

Society of Physiotherapy (CSP), English

understand our language, and vice versa,”

Rugby Players’ Association and Tottenham

says John.

Hotspur FC – to communicate its models’

Yes, John admits, age remains an

capabilities when it comes to comfort,

important metric. Younger audiences

wellbeing, aiding recovery and helping ease

tend to be much more price-sensitive,

aches and pains.

he says – a £1000 mattress (Mammoth’s

John’s approach to marketing has long

existing lines start at a retail price of

been ahead of the curve, but his recent foray

around £800) is generally not available to

into marketing personalisation has revealed

a 20- or 30-something with a marked lack

new directions for the brand which even he

of disposable income, or even the desire to

didn’t expect to encounter.

spend that much.

“All businesses are having to be more

But our established notions of age groups

savvy about where their customers come

shouldn’t define how a business presents its

from,” says John. “At Mammoth, we’ve

offer. “The average age of our customers is

developed a sophisticated system to really

57,” says John, “but, taken in isolation, that

drill down and get to know our audience.”

doesn’t tell us much. People in their 30s and

Traditionally, he remarks, the furniture

FN354_Pages.indd 21

“There are some pretty cool silver surfers out there,” says John, by way of example.

40s still account for a third of our customer

industry has tended to categorise

base, while our sales actually peak with an

customers by age group, and target its offer

audience in their 60s. It’s what’s behind

24/08/2018 15:49

22 | Interview

that ‘57’ that’s important.” Indeed, the analysis is so detailed that Mammoth is even able to identify audiences on a retailer-by-retailer basis. “Take Furniture Village – while their Mammoth customer is still in their 50s, they are, on average, five years younger than our norm, and the retail price they purchase at is +1520% higher,” says John. “We’re taking a much more intelligent approach to marketing, and we can only do so through data analysis. I’m excited by the possibilities – these capabilities are going to allow us to work much more closely with our key manufacturing and sales partners as well as our stockists, and to speak much more directly to their customers.” It’s all about delivering a simpler message, explains John, but through a far more targeted approach – tailoring the

One of Mammoth’s new mattresses

theme, call to action, message format and language to each specific cohort, depending

don’t care as much about – what they’re

on their specific drivers.

buying. They care more about their time.

“We might target one recipient with

“As a trade we have some strong

“semi-skimmed, not full-fat” Mammoth. “It will hopefully broaden our distribution,” he continues, “but the

a message around back pain, in which

thoughts about what people want – but

focus is more on helping our established

we’d lead with our association with the

many people aren’t sure. Somebody’s ‘firm’

customers appeal to younger cohorts by

CSP,” he says. “Or we’d decide to push the

mattress is another’s ‘regular’ – and do the

having a product offer that’s relevant to

‘attainable luxury’ message, and talk about

majority of people really care how many

them – particularly those first-generation

the products’ sophisticated foam interiors

pocket springs are in a mattress?”

mattress buyers, in their 20s and 30s.

and tailored finishing to sit, sleep and/

Yet there’s an even greater number of

“At the same time, our established

or relax better, in terms of both style and

consumers out there who do like to choose

models will be taken up a notch – more in


exactly what’s right for them, and, to

terms of value and the ‘good stuff’ than

many of them, Mammoth’s message of

price – giving our core customers more of

personalisation in marketing, John

scientifically-guaranteed sleep is already

what they love. They will benefit from more

acknowledges that, in our industry, at

coming across loud and clear.

fillings, and a more luxurious finish.

Despite the growing trend towards

least, it has its limitations, so customer

“Thanks to our data analysis, we’re

research should always be informed by

finding that there’s a big appetite for the

to create customer loyalty that can

sector-specific experience – and the initial

Mammoth brand name and technological

cross-fertilise through the generations,

findings should only serve as a guide.

DNA, across all age demographics,” says

in the form of in-family referrals between

John, who reveals the development of a new

grandparent, parent, child, and vice versa.

elements,” he says, “and that’s generally

pricing architecture across the company’s

As ecommerce uptake grows and customer

when people haven’t got the time to make

entire range.

loyalty generally declines, this kind of

“Personalisation caps out on certain

“In all, it’s going to enable our retailers

a choice. Some mattress buyers just want to

After all, just as shopping on an iPad is

know if something got a good review, and if

no longer solely the domain of the younger

sustainability of a retail business, and the

they can get it quickly.

generations, it’s not just the elderly that

brands they represent.”

“This is no better demonstrated than by the bed-in-a-box – it’s a no-brainer. To most of us, offering choice and a degree

experience back pain or have difficulties achieving good-quality sleep. “We want to expand the Mammoth

approach will become essential to the

According to John, the new pricing and model architecture is “super consumer friendly”, will be easy to understand and

of individualisation is important – but the

brand to make it more easily attainable

communicate, while opening new doors for

fact that these brands have stripped so

for health-considered customers of all

stockists – and it’s all come about thanks

much out of the marketplace shows that

ages, and especially to those whose value

to the data.

plenty of customers just don’t have the

sensitivity is higher,” says John, who

time to really consider – and, generally,

describes the new, lower-priced line as

“We’re continually having to develop more commercial propositions for our retail partners,” he concludes, “and the combination of new technology and new thinking we’re engaging is allowing us to

“These capabilities are going to allow us to work much more closely with our key manufacturing and sales partners as well as our stockists, and to speak much more directly to their customers”

FN354_Pages.indd 22

do exactly that.” What does the customer want? The answer’s out there – for those asking the right questions.

24/08/2018 15:49


Make more shoppers feel at home With over a third of furniture customers now preferring to buy online, it’s never been more important to ensure the online path to purchase is smooth and frictionless. Recent research by Klarna revealed that shoppers are increasingly turning to online shopping for homeware, with 69% revealing they have bought home and garden products online. Forwardthinking merchants looking to stand out from the crowd need to focus on engaging, converting and building loyalty with those shoppers, who prefer showrooming to showrooms.

Prioritise user experience

Improve payment options

Incite loyalty

A poor user experience causes lost sales. Fact.

Shoppers expect to be able to pay how and when is most convenient for them. By incorporating payment methods which allow customers to be smart with their money, furniture retailers can gain a significant advantage over their competitors in the battle for the consumer.

Shoppers today are increasingly time-poor and easily frustrated by friction. Furniture retailers need to step up their game to meet the sky-high expectations of their customers if they want to secure their loyalty.

Consumers today have more places and ways to shop than ever before — and increasingly short attention spans. Online retailers need to be able to quickly attract a shopper’s notice and make the buying journey a joy. To accomplish this, they must take a holistic view of the customer journey. Every touch point should be designed with the customer in mind, no matter what device they are browsing on. But while it’s important to pique consumer interest in a product, closing a sale is crucial — so guiding customers through checkout must be as seamless and smooth as possible. Introducing an online checkout that minimises steps to purchase, is mobileoptimised and enables one-click repeat purchases will be key to success.

FN354_Pages.indd 23 Klarna-Advertorial_v4.indd 1

Giving shoppers options such as the ability to pay after delivery, or in equal monthly installments, is particularly important in the furniture industry where items are naturally more of an investment. In fact, 52% of shoppers have to save for several months before they can purchase home and garden goods. Furniture retailers may be missing out on new customers during this time. Or customers themselves may be missing out on their preferred items due to dwindling stock. So, whether you’re a furniture start-up or a seasoned retailer, providing customers with convenience and payment choice at the checkout can mean the difference between conversion and basket abandonment.

Take payments, for instance. A key factor in consumers shopping in-store rather than online is wanting to experience the look and feel of a product before buying. Introducing a service that lets them try before they buy — such as Klarna’s Pay later — can bridge the online-offline gap. Additionally, for larger-ticket items, offering quick and easy online consumer finance — such as Klarna’s Slice it — can turn a browser into a buyer. By empowering the shopper with financial options and convenience you can ensure repeat custom, while also enabling your brand to stand out from the crowd. Remember: Satisfied customers are likely to become frequent users, loyal to your brand. By understanding the needs of different shoppers and optimising your ecommerce channel accordingly, furniture retailers can give their business a boost and make more shoppers feel at home.

24/08/2018 10/08/2018 15:49 17:22

Boxing clever At first glance, it’s easy to view Emma Mattress as just another bed-in-a-box brand hungry for a share of the UK market. Focused product offer? Check. Rapid online fulfilment? Check. One hundred-night guarantee? Check. But Emma’s DNA is fundamentally different, says founder and CEO Max Laarmann as the brand embarks on its first bricks-and-mortar tie-up in the UK …

Max Laarmann

FN354_Pages.indd 24

24/08/2018 15:49

Interview | 25

I founded Emma Mattress at the end of 2015 as a subsidiary of Bettzeit – which also has Dormando, one of the first online mattress retailers in Germany, under its umbrella. In December 2016, Bettzeit also acquired the well-established mattress brand, Dunlopillo Germany.

“To date, growth has been organic, with an investment of only €5m. We are currently breakeven at an EBIT level, and expect to turn a profit next year”

There’s a natural synergy in sharing resources across different mattress brands

confusing to shoppers – and, when you

generation three-layer pure foam mattress

– such as an ability to increase our R&D

took the long delivery times into account,

(and this year’s winner of the Which? Best

spending and invest in market-leading

it didn’t make for easy or seamless buying

on Test 2018).

talent. However, Bettzeit is clear in how


both brands are differentiated in terms of offering and route to market.

Using customer insight, we not only

Both mattresses cater for a wide variety of sleep types and target the majority

sought to make the buying process easier,

of sleepers. We felt it helpful to provide

more convenient and quicker, but also

customers with our two approaches to the

We called the brand Emma because that’s

harnessed the science behind sleep to create

one-for-all mattress – but always ensuring

one of the most popular and best-loved

a mattress that suits all body and sleep types.

the quality is market-leading and award-

names across Europe, and it’s one that people can relate to.

We felt that the market was sizeable


enough to continue pushing across Europe. We also found that other brands were not

Bettzeit’s turnover in 2017 was €33m,

Before introducing Emma Mattress to the

investing enough in R&D and really offering

and is forecast to hit €60m this year – and

UK market the mattress had been a popular

the best mattress.

it’s actually on track to surpass that goal.

buy in several European countries including

We knew that if we continually invested

To date, growth has been organic, with an

Austria, Switzerland, the Netherlands,

in increasing mattress quality, whilst

investment of only €5m. We are currently

Poland, Germany and France. It is currently

driving marketing efficiency, we would build

break-even at an EBIT level, and expect to

the most awarded mattress in Europe,

a business and a brand equipped for the

turn a profit next year.

securing the top test scores in Spain,


Portugal, France, Italy, and now the UK.

Our R&D operation is highly advanced. We currently offer two mattresses – the

Direct-to-consumer [D2C] brands like

Like many other others, the brand was

Emma Hybrid, a four-layered spring and

Emma Mattress have unparalleled access

born out of a consumer problem. Before,

foam mattress (and a Which? Best Buy

to consumers’ sleep feedback, and we

mattress buying was cumbersome and

2017), and the Emma Original, our next-

ensure that the feedback loop is closed by

As well as its two models, Emma Mattress offers a range of matching accessories including pillows, mattress protectors and bed bases

FN354_Pages.indd 25

24/08/2018 15:49

26 | Interview

continually collecting sleep data and feeding

customer purchasing cycle, which means

pending, as part of its drive to develop an

this directly into our R&D.

that every customer acquisition should be

innovative ergonomic mattress structure

profitable and sustainable. Our competitors’

that meets the needs of different body and

with a team of 10 engineers and textile

strategy pins too much on building a brand

sleep types.

designers in place to advance the sleep

unsustainably, with the hope that the brand

technology applied in each Emma mattress.

will somehow pay for itself.

Bettzeit invests heavily in this process,

The results speak for themselves – just

We are concerned that some of our

We anticipate some consolidation in the market very soon. We hope that after seeing

look at our Which? accolades. Investing our

highly-unprofitable competitors are

the first significant dropouts, investors

focus and resources in product quality has

overselling and under-delivering, and

will appreciate that, yes, online mattress

helped fuel our growth – both top- and

causing a bubble in the market. Emma

companies can fail – but because of poor


Mattress has been very careful to acquire

management, but not because the overall

every customer profitably and to not only

business idea of selling mattresses directly

As an online retailer the company can

chase top-line growth, but to do so while

to the consumer is not profitable or scalable.

incorporate direct customer feedback

maintaining a sustainable bottom line.

By the end of June this year, Emma Mattress had sold 250,000 mattresses

into its product roadmap, allowing it to drive product development quickly. Direct

Our business success and competitor

– many more than almost any major

customer feedback is gathered online,

differentiation rests on two pillars –

competitor – and achieved this with only

allowing the R&D team to adopt continuous

product quality and marketing efficiency.

€5m equity raised, which is substantially

improvement strategies, and quickly drive

We believe this is a more lasting strategy

less than our major competitors.

product innovation that optimally maps to

for creating superior products and a brand

the sleeping needs of UK consumers.

people trust.

We’ve now gone into partnership with DFS

Coupled with given our comparatively

– they are going to sell the Emma Hybrid

of the Emma Hybrid, and the subsequent

small funding, our strategy might seem less

online and across their 95-strong physical

Emma Original, with its even better score. As

aggressive – but we have outgrown almost

store estate.

a result of being able to fine-tune product,

all our competitors by sticking to it.

This has been shown with the creation

Over the coming months, new in-store PoS displays will be rolled out in selected

the Emma Original mattress has been named best product by independent consumer

Like any fast-growing start-up, Emma

stores, making DFS the first and only UK

magazines in six European countries.

Mattress has faced challenges and barriers

retailer to offer customers the chance to

to growth, such as developing quality

see and try out the Emma Hybrid mattress

Other bed-in-a-box brands have followed

products that utilise innovative new

before placing their order.

the path of fast-growth technology brands,

materials and production techniques while

and have looked to aggressively buy market

penetrating a highly-competitive, price-

share and reap the rewards later.

sensitive market.

However, the mattress market has a long

FN354_Pages.indd 26

Emma Mattress currently has two patents

Alongside that, we have lots of exciting plans for growth in the pipeline …

24/08/2018 15:49

Interview | 27

“The mattress market has a long customer purchasing cycle, which means that every customer acquisition should be profitable and sustainable�

Emma mattresses are made in the UK and delivered D2C in one to three days

FN354_Pages.indd 27

24/08/2018 15:49 01237 471872

ft . q s 0 0 0 , 0 4 2 FN354_Pages.indd 28

y r o t fac

24/08/2018 15:49

Truly made in the UK from raw solid timber through to the ďŹ nished product 4 paint colours 60+ items Made from solid wood Bedroom Dining Living

High quality Quick delivery Held in stock

g n i n i D FN354_Pages.indd 29

24/08/2018 15:49

30 | Interview

This month’s featured homewares website is, which will make its trade debut at Decorex – Furniture News explores the practices and philosophies behind the enterprise ...

Clickthrough > British Design Shop Nick Powell, MD Summary: A contemporary online furniture label which unites the artistry of talented British designers with the skills of local craftspeople.

In our world, contemporary design blends seamlessly with traditional furnituremaking

the British Design Shop with three business partners.

skills honed over time – designers and craftsmen working intuitively together

Who is your ecommerce hero?

Launched: 2017

to make classic designs of the future.

I think it’s difficult to single one person

SKUs: Around 25 individual pieces, to grow to a maximum of around 50 in the next 1224 months

Therefore, you won’t find masses of product

out. I continue to be impressed by how

on the site, but you will find some beautiful

ecommerce is developing in terms of the

pieces that will stand the test of time.

technical capabilities of modern ecommerce

Services: Fully-bespoke upholstery – including COM – and paint finish services, plus a stock of premium barstools that can be delivered within 3-5 days. 90% of upholstery pieces are made to order.

trading platforms. Behind all these How did you enter the industry?

platforms are several unsung heroes who

I first started developing furniture when

build and maintain the sites (which takes

I was the marketing director for Sealine

months of technical development work prior

Yachts and Brunswick Marine. Each of the boatyards had an in-house wood shop that would develop beautiful furniture for the Why visit your website? Our aim is to offer beautiful, distinct

interiors of the yachts. In 2011, I joined Gloster Furniture as

furniture pieces that are all designed and

brand director and was responsible for

made in Britain. Whilst our prices are

developing their brand and product range.

premium, we feel they represent excellent

Following my time with Gloster, and after

value for money given the levels of

a second period working back in the marine

craftsmanship and quality materials that go

industry, my passion for design, furniture

into each piece.

and local craftsmanship led me to setting up

“You won’t find masses of product on the site, but you will find some beautiful pieces that will stand the test of time”

Amy, designed by British Design Shop co-founder Carsten Astheimer

FN354_Pages.indd 30

24/08/2018 15:49

Interview | 31

to launch, and lots of know-how). For me, these people are my ecommerce heroes.

Form barstool, designed by Tim Moore, lead designer at Astheimer

Describe a typical working day … Having worked for big corporates for many years, I now enjoy the small-is-beautiful approach to running a business. This means I take care of everything, from arranging an exhibition to picking up new products in development and taking them to the studio to be photographed. I see each customer order through the business, and make sure that the deliveries go out on time and to the customer’s requirements. The inbound

The Lara Collection, designed by British Design Shop co-founder Carsten Astheimer

calls are handled by a small team at the design studio where we are based in Warwick, so picking up the phone and talking to the customers is also part of my typical day. What part of your job would you prefer to avoid? Dealing with and filling out forms for merchant bank underwriters – I’m happy not to have to do that again. What has been your greatest challenge to date?

exhibitions during the next 24 months. The

The time and effort it takes to get the

second stream is direct marketing, such as

business off the ground. Everything needs

PPC and email marketing campaigns, which

to be developed in parallel. This means

are more tactical in nature and have more of

creating a brand, protecting it, developing

a direct ROI measure. As sales grow, we will

enough new product, financing the

increase our investment in both areas.

company, establishing stock, suppliers, logistics, premises, etc. It’s a mountain to

What is your take on how the relationship

climb, so you must believe in what you are

between online and physical retail might

trying to do to keep going at the start.

develop? I’ve been fortunate enough during my career

How much do you invest in keeping your

to lead the development of both physical

site visible?

and online stores. Clearly, there is growth in

This is a moving target as the benefit of

online, which now equates to around 20% of

ecommerce is you can track your ROI for a

all retail sales. My perspective is that a blend


of physical retail and online is the optimum

There are two streams of activity planned. The first is building awareness of the

“Behind all these platforms are several unsung heroes who build and maintain the sites, which takes months of technical development work prior to launch, and lots of know-how”

solution. In my opinion, the overheads that are

as a private company, without holding any

company and what we stand for. For this

associated with large permanent stores are

debt other than the original directors’ loans.

we will invest in PR and attending some key

not something that necessarily add value

Therefore, we want to grow organically over

to the customer in terms of the

time as we promote the ethos of British-

product they are purchasing.

designed-and-made products.

More creative models need to be considered based on holding less

What advice would you offer an aspiring

infrastructure, such as a single


flagship store, pop-up stores

Before etail came along, you had to create

and exhibitions. These can be

a relevant brand – and this is still the case.

optimised with your online retail

Therefore, spend some time and a bit of

strategy to give the most value to

money here before you jump into developing

the customer.

an etail business. Etail is just the channel you are selling through. It will take time,

FN354_Pages.indd 31

Do you have any plans to grow

money and a lot of arduous work to get

your business?

started in etail, so make sure your brand

The business has been established

holds together at the outset

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32 | Events

PREVIEW SIMPLE SOURCING FOR THE SOUTH-WEST The South West Furniture Show returns to Sedgemoor Auction Centre this month, with the promise of a host of the latest launches … The regional, agent-led exhibition

and South Wales, and now comprises

this year’s South West Furniture Show,

is organised by the South West

50 members, representing over 130

which will take place at Sedgemoor

Furniture Manufacturers’ Agent

manufacturers and suppliers.

Auction Centre, North Petherton,

and Representatives Federation

Whilst April 2018 saw the debut

Somerset, from 11-13th September.

(SWFMARF), which was established

of the federation’s South West Bed

As in previous years, there will be

over 25 years ago to assist trade

Show, beds will be present alongside

late evenings, a mix of members and

customers in south-west England

cabinet, upholstery and accessories at

manufacturers, drinks vouchers and welcome gifts. “Despite the quiet trade, we’re hopeful that retailers will make the straightforward journey to our location and support the many launches that our members have been working on,” says SWFMARF secretary, Maud Laine. “Many of us are expanding our product ranges to counteract the downturn, and are trusting that the retailers will also recognise the various benefits to their footfall, trade and bottom line.” Visitors are advised to pre-register for free access on the federation’s website.

FN354_Pages.indd 32

24/08/2018 15:49









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34 | Events


NEW BLOOD ENLIVENS LONG EATON SHOW The Long Eaton Guild of Furniture Manufacturers’ biannual Long Point exhibition returns to the town of Long Eaton from 17-19th this month …


t may be set across various locations, but Long Point offers

Sydney, Wiemann

the trade an intimate setting in

which to do business with some of the UK’s best-known upholstery and cabinet manufacturers, plus a number of guest exhibitors and those with permanent showroom space within the town’s Harrington Mill. This autumn’s edition sees several new companies join the exhibitor roster: Portuguese contemporary brand Evanyrouse Furniture, exhibiting on the second floor of Harrington Mill; Italian chair specialist Peressini Casa, in the same space; and the UK’s largest adjustable bed manufacturer, and a leader in the production of lift-and-recline chairs, Furmanac, which will be present at a new exhibition location, The Exchange. Located in Westend Mill on Leopold Street (opposite Harrington Mill), The Exchange serves various functions, acting as the headquarters of trade association the BFM and digital agency Orbital, as well as being a new regional HQ for The Furniture Makers’ Company.

The first evening of the show will, will

with a party commencing at 6pm.

also be present, showing off new

Present will be Maggie Throup,

ranges from its permanent showroom

Conservative MP for the Erewash

in Harrington Mill.

constituency, who was recently

and traditional is one of the key

Parliamentary Furniture Industry

selling points of the award-winning

Group (APPFIG). Anyone interested

manufacturer’s latest semi-solid oak

in attending should visit www.orbital.

collection, Sydney.

vision/the-exchange/#register. Other exhibitors include Iain James

The range offers a two- or threedoor sliding wardrobe, complete with

Furniture (0115 973 4481, www.

a passe-partout frame and soft-, which

closing doors – along with a choice

continues to buck the declining trend

of bedside and storage chests. Fronts

in quality English cabinetmaking,

can be crisp and fresh in white glass

and will present new products from

or dark or subdued in havana glass or

its Harrington Mill and Bridge Street

bronze mirror.

The company offers several classical

Says distributor Simon Hewitt: “Over the past couple of years we’ve

lifestyle collections, which help create

seen an increase in interest in our

arguably one of the most impressive

better quality ranges, and following on

modern-day interior aesthetics

from its successful January Furniture

– an eclectic blend of traditional

Show launch, Sydney is proving to be

and contemporary styling through

a big hit with many of our retailers.”

timeless and elegant design features.

FN354_Pages.indd 34

A subtle combination of modern

appointed the chair of the All Party


AMC60 glass top coffee table, Iain James Furniture

Wiemann (enquiries@wiemannuk.

see the building’s official opening,

Autumn Long Point is open from

An approachable and conscientious

9am-6pm daily,and is open to all

company, Iain James Furniture offers

retail and bona fide interior designer

bespoke sizing on many of the pieces

visitors able to produce a business

in its ranges – which it says proves of

card upon entry to each showroom.

great assistance to retail and interior

design partners when driving sales.


24/08/2018 15:49


Long Point Furniture Show Harris Tweed Fast Track Collection

Long point - Long Eaton 17-19 September 2018

Come Visit Us

Simple - Style - Comfort - Beauty

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36 | Events


100% DESIGN BROADENS HORIZONS 100% Design returns to London’s Olympia venue for its 24th edition from 19th–22nd of this month, and its organiser has announced a shake-up to the exhibition’s traditional programming.

Vincent Sheppard


00% Design will present new features, fresh design talents

from other cities around the world. 100% Forward, curated by journalist

Exhibitors include Benchmark, Established & Sons, Dare Studio,

Barbara Chandler, will highlight

Yoo,, Bulo, Thors Design,

a roster of industry favourites, big-

eight emerging design talents across, Proper Copper Design

name brands and innovators. Two new

furniture, product, lighting and textile

and Vincent Sheppard.

features – 100% Futures and 100%

design. Each will be championed by an

Alongside the core offer will be

Forward – will focus on emerging

established designer who carved his or

Talks With 100% Design, one of the

designers across innovation and

her career during the first decade of

most forward-thinking seminar

furniture design, respectively.

100% Design.

programmes on the design calendar.

and emerging names alongside

100% Futures will celebrate

For example, Simon Pengelly,

The return of so many leading

forward-thinking design from a

who started his career in 1993 when

brands, plus debuts from emerging

selection of British and international

he presented at 100% Design, has

talent, is set to cement the show’s

talents who have chosen to set up

selected Daniel Schofield who, in just

position as a cornerstone event of the

their practices in London. Spearheaded

five years, has honed his reductive

London Design Festival.

by design journalist Max Fraser, 100%

approach to materials, form and

Futures will shine a light on designs

function to create celebrated lighting,

across travel, technology, wellbeing,

furniture and tabletop products.

public spaces and sustainability, with

This year will also see the launch of

the theme Designing for London.

the West Kensington Design District,

100% Futures will also share designs

a hub set to inspire design enthusiasts during the London Design Festival through an engaging programme featuring design brands, globallyrecognised cultural institutions and events. The district will be brought to life by an array of partners including the Design Museum, V&A Blythe House, Polish brand Zieta at Arthill Gallery and many others. 100% Design’s core exhibition covers Interiors, Kitchens, Bathrooms and Bedrooms, emerging brands and, new for this year, 100% Build London, a dedicated show for the construction

Thors Design

FN354_Pages.indd 36

and architectural industries.


24/08/2018 15:49

Minerva Ad (FN) August 13th_Layout 1 30/07/2018 13:41 Page 1

NAEC, Stoneleigh Park, Kenilworth, Warwickshire 2nd & 3rd OCTOBER 2018

A spectacular two day trade event Open to all furniture buyers & bed retailers – Register online now for your free admission ● ●

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Great location with free parking

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PS. Interested in exhibiting? Call us on 01249 716195 FN354_Pages.indd 37

24/08/2018 15:49

38 | Events


COME ONE, COME ALL, SAYS MINERVA This year’s Autumn Furniture Show, a two-day trade event for the entire furniture industry, is being held at Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire on the 2nd and 3rd of October, and is open to all buyers associated with the furniture and interiors business …


traditional to industrial and rustic –

by the Minerva Furniture

with the inclusion of home decor and

surrounded by countryside in the

Group, attracts visitors from

accessories, it promises to provide a

heart of England, with good road, rail

one-stop interiors shop for visitors.

and air access, ample free parking

across the trade each year, including furniture, bed and home decor

An impressive range of suppliers

retailers, along with contract buyers

have already signed up to exhibit,

and interior and contract specifiers.

including some of the biggest names

and a wide choice of accommodation close by. Entry to the show is free to all, and

in the industry. The bed suppliers

includes complimentary lunch on both

trade show, the Autumn Furniture

include Steinhoff, Somnus, Harrison,

days. Although organised by Minerva

Show’s timing offers retailers an

Sleepeezee and Deepsleep, while on

Furniture Group, the show is open to

opportunity to order stock ready for

the upholstery side exhibitors include

the entire furniture trade, and is not a

the run-up to Christmas.

Alstons, Sherborne, Duresta and Vale

member-only event.

As the year’s final UK furniture

The event promises an impressive UK and global portfolio of suppliers

Upholstery. For visitors interested in other

Last year’s event enjoyed good attendance from both non-members

across two halls, with exhibitors

sectors there will be Besp-Oak

and members – and with this year’s

covering all furniture sectors. A broad

Furniture, Willis & Gambier,

line-up of suppliers, the organiser

selection of product – from dining,

Annaghmore, Kingstown Furniture

anticipates another strong edition.

living, upholstery, beds, bedroom

and Baker Furniture to name but a few

and home office furniture to lighting,

– and then there are exhibitors such

register on the show’s website. There

home decor, soft furnishings, pictures

as Gallery Direct which offer a diverse

are also a few stand spaces available

and mirrors – will be on display.

range of home furnishings. There are

for any company interested in

also more specialist suppliers, such


products to suit all tastes and styles

as BilliB Clocks, and Luminess for

T 01249 716195

of interior, from contemporary and


The range available will encompass

FN354_Pages.indd 38

The venue, Stoneleigh Park, is

he show, which is organised

Anyone planning to visit can

24/08/2018 15:49


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New without knuckle option available in the following sizes: Petite

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24/08/2018 15:49

40 | Events


SOURCING OPPORTUNITIES IN TURKEY’S FURNITURE CAPITAL From 23rd-27th October, Inegol Furniture Fair will return to Modef Expo in Turkey’s furniture capital in Bursa for its 40th edition, where it is set to present international visitors with a plethora of sourcing opportunities …


ith the aid of key Turkish trade associations including the Inegol

Furniture Manufacturers Association, Inegol Chamber of Commerce, Inegol Carpentery and Furniture Makers Chamber, the organiser of Inegol Furniture Fair, Modef Fairs, strives to promote the Turkish region’s furniture production capabilities at every opportunity. The October exhibition – another show tailored towards the domestic market which takes place in the same venue each March – reflects Turkey’s largest furniture manufacturing community, and takes place across a 28,000m2 covered exhibition space. “We have around 200 top

FN354_Pages.indd 40

certified by international audits.” The fair works closely with local

Modef Fairs aims to ensure exhibitors and visitors can come

manufacturers, offering European-

authorities to ensure visitors are

together and do business, and to

level design and quality,” says

able to enjoy what the city of Inegol

better uncover the region’s untapped

Yavuz Ugurdag, chairman of

has to offer, such as sampling its


Modef Fairs. “Our sole focus is

world-famous meatballs, or visiting

furniture manufacture, and offering

the local caves, Turkish baths, and

complimentary visitor package,

international customers a reliable

snowboarding opportunities on

prospective visitors can email visitor@

service – we can produce to FR

Uludağ mountain. Inegol is just two – or can visit the website

requirements, and in line with IFS

hours away from Istanbul, making a

to find out more about the event’s

Laboratories in the UK. Also, our wood

visit to the capital a straightforward


and wood-based raw materials are


To learn more about the show’s

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42 | Events


BELGRADE’S INTERNATIONAL MARKET GETS A BOOST This November sees one of South-east Europe’s key furniture events return to Serbia. The 56th Belgrade Furniture Fair – taking place at Belgrade Fair from 6-11th November – promises to encompass design, manufacturing and distribution, and this year will benefit from a greater number of global brands, exhibitor awards and an engaging seminar programme.


elgrade Furniture Fair attracts exhibitors both regional – from Serbia, Slovenia,

Croatia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina – and international, drawing on US, Austrian, German, Italian, Polish and Turkish manufacturers, to deliver an event which is becoming more international with every passing year. The 2017 fair saw the debut of world-renowned exhibitors including Vitra, Elica, Mattiazzi, LaCividina, Forestier, Petite Friture, Mobles 114 and Emko, and this edition – which comprises the 56th International Fair of Furniture, Equipment and Interior Decoration, as well as the 56th International Fair of Woodworking Machines, Tools and Production Materials – promises to take a step

with designers and architects, while

backdrop of a manufacturing base

forward in every area, from design

an international jury will grant the

rife with competitive advantages.

quality to communication.

Golden Key awards to the most

Serbia’s highly-skilled workforce has

successful exhibitors at the end of the

a strong tradition of woodworking,


furnituremaking and exporting, and

Bolstered by an improved hosted buyers programme, the show will present a diverse mix of discussions

The exhibition is set against a

labour rates are among the lowest in Europe. Raw materials are certainly not in short supply – the country boasts some 2.5 million hectares of forests, with beech, oak and other hardwoods and softwoods in good number (some FSC-certified). Meanwhile, local manufacturers are able to produce particleboard, polyurethane foam and other important raw materials. Within 2000km of most major European markets and Moscow, and with a currency linked to the euro, meaning greater price stability, Serbia also enjoys free trade agreements with most major economies, which help make it an attractive prospect for those seeking new import opportunities.

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44 | Resources

Predicting future trends is a notoriously tricky business. But, as former Government technology ambassador (and selfconfessed digital existentialist) Simon Moores told the NBF Spring Forum earlier this year, one thing is certain – we live in an age of possibilities. Bed industry specialist Jan Turner reports …

Predictive text Back in 1993, comms giant AT&T eerily hit the mark when it produced a futuregazing video that identified a world in which talking computers would answer our questions, we’d control home heating and

“It’s all about eliminating friction by taking out the middle layer – the layer between you and your customers”

lighting from a remote control, bills would be paid electronically and our lives would

Change, says Simon, was once much more

mobile CPU, ubiquitous networking, mobile

be transformed by smartphones and smart

incremental: “But those days have gone

payments and Paypal – all simultaneously


and everything is going to be managed by

became good enough for a mass audience.

Back then, it seemed to be the stu� of pure science fiction – today its science fact.

algorithms and characterised by artificial

“Indium - the magic dust - further

intelligence (AI), data and machine learning.

added to the mix, giving us the touchscreen

What we’re seeing and what is emerging is

technology which ensured the iPhone

just as spectacularly wrong. Approached

the redistribution of intelligence from the

became a disruptive new arrival and

in 1995 with an opportunity to get in on

centre (the cloud or network hub/server) to

e�ectively finished o� the previous market

the ground floor of a new, free internet

the edge of network, going direct to devices

leaders Nokia and Blackberry. In short, the

service (back then there was a monthly

(such as Alexa and direct delivery services).

critical mass of technological building blocks

Two years later, Richard Branson got it

fee), he declined, with the sage assurance

“Thanks to super-fast telecoms and the

got good enough, and the world lurched

that “Virgin would never go into internet

certain arrival of 5G, more processes are

forward. When a critical mass arrives, then

business - I see no future in it.” You can just

moving direct to devices which will know

the whole mass can sprint forward.

never tell.

and understand what people want.

As Simon Moores, now MD of

“Increasingly, this is about not

“Apps have added a further dimension, and innovation is now not just about ideas,

Zenintelligence (Research), points out:

necessarily owning things. For millennials

but about solving problems. Businesses have

“None of us knows what the future looks

in particular, it’s about being experiential

become information-processing systems

like as there are so many complex and fast

- people don’t want things, they want

reliant on tools, analytics and data, and

changes. It is hard to predict even five years

experiences. They may prefer to rent than

the arrival of the platforms they are based

from now, with inventions and technologies

buy, but it’s all about lifestyle, choice and

on is now changing economies and many

coming along at an unprecedented rate – so

ease of use. And ease of use means accessing

companies are shrinking around their core

the impact on our personal futures is hard

and acquiring what people need through


to see.”

their mobile phones. “The bottom line is that companies and businesses which are not easily accessible

predict the future is changing. We are now

through mobile phones will miss out.

using massive numbers of people - maybe

Indeed, in the next five years, it will be the

a million data points - with predictive

nations and businesses with the fastest

analytics showing more accurately the

servers, greatest processing power and most

way humans behave. It means we can be

data that will drive growth in the world.

more specific about target audiences for

“We live in an era of possibilities. Just

adverts - maybe based on Facebook profiles

think of how life has changed thanks to all

- allowing leading-edge companies to get a

the technologies around us. We can now

much clearer picture about how things are

be friends with up to two billion people


around the globe on Facebook if we want

FN354_Pages.indd 44

“Just look at the e�ect of Amazon on

to. Technology is changing at an incredible

the high street. It originally started out

pace. The latest Mac Pro has, in just one

just selling books online, but today it sells

device, more memory than all the Apple II

pretty much most of our everyday, non-food

computers ever made in the past.

requirements, and its founder Je� Bezos

“When it came along in 2007, it was

Simon Moores

“Businesses are going through a period of disruption, and the way in which we

is the richest man in the world. 50% of

thought that the first iPhone would have

Americans have Amazon Prime, which is

no significant market share. But it quickly

now capable of anticipating what you want

humbled all predecessors - WAP phones,

and sending it to you every month. It knows

Blackberries, Nokias, etc. What happened

what you want and makes it easier for you to

was that a variety of previous enabling

just send back what you don’t want, which

technologies - the cloud, social media,

is quite worrying for retailers.

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46 | Resources

“Delivery expectations are also moving

“Google and other companies are

“AI will run behind everything with

from next-day to same-day. It’s all about

expanding their AI teams at a massive

cheap, reliable, industrial-grade smartness.

eliminating friction by taking out the middle

rate, but the problem is that the number

Machines are now learning to learn, and

layer – the layer between you and your

of people with the skills to develop it are

improving algorithmic approaches to many


few, and more expensive than American

problems will mean machines routinely

quarterbacks to hire.

outperforming humans. Success will lie in

“Back in the 20th century, giant monopolies were created - IBM, Ford Motor

“The emergence of AI also coincides with

recognising that human beings are good

Co, GM, etc - through economies of scale,

co-rises in synthetic biology robots, virtual

at pattern recognition and machines at

an advantage which made it di�cult for

machinery, powerful processors, 3D printing

developing solutions. By bringing them

competitors to follow.

and so on.

together in business we can e�ect a

Today, the world’s largest companies -

“These converging technologies will see

transformation. “The pace of change means things are

Apple, Google, etc - run platform business

2018 as the year of machine learning and AI,

models and leverage the opportunity of

with some very interesting things about to

starting to happen very quickly indeed now.

connective devices. The digital environment


Once we had 10, 20 or even 50 years to adapt

can be fast, instant and with a near-zero

“The next 20 years will show which

to the technology of change, but now it is

cost of access - and the results can be

companies can jump from the digital world

more like 18 months to two years (if you’re

transformative. Look at the way in which

of the internet to AI. The business plans of


Uber has been disrupting taxi businesses

the next 10,000 start-ups are fairly easy

around the world.

to predict – take X and add AI. We take

of transformative change with so much

“The message is that we are in a period

electricity for granted, but when it was

happening under the waterline that

industrial revolution. It will have a more

first invented it became an enabler, and

businesses need someone to understand how

profound e�ect on the human race than

that’s where AI is going. Using it will be as

that is going to come together and impact

electricity or fire.

commonplace as electricity.

business, and be open to new ideas.”

“Now AI is set to bring about a second

THE AUTHOR Jan Turner is an industry PR veteran and a correspondent for the National Bed Federation (NBF).

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48 | Resources

Good marketing takes time and planning – but when advertising furniture, how do you promote your business, specifically? If you run a furniture business, you have plenty of competition to contend with, which means your marketing campaign must be exact and effective to push you ahead of your competitors and deliver the best RoI – writes Gary Peeling, who suggests the pitfalls to avoid when planning your next marketing strategy …

Six furniture marketing pitfalls to avoid 1. Missing the boat on merchandise When people come into your furniture store or order online from you, will they remember your brand afterwards to ensure a repeat purchase? Did you know that, according to a survey carried out by promotional products association PPAI, 80% of people can recall a brand after receiving a promotional product? If you don’t offer branded pens and notepads in your store, or a branded product that you can deliver alongside your customers’ furniture order, you might be

“As there are many dedicated furniture shops, as well as large department stores that sell furniture items, you need to target people as directly as possible”

promote your furniture brand. According to research carried out by Benchmarketing, placing ads in newspapers can triple your brand’s ROI, while a survey by MarketingSherpa discovered that just over 80% of internet users trust print ads the most when making a purchase decision. High-quality furniture is a luxury item that people spend time considering before purchasing. When creating your print ads, show how your products can create the perfect ambiance in a home by using engaging and positive language — adjectives like elegant,

missing a trick.

sophisticated, contemporary and rustic may

But first, test this out to see if it’s worth


the investment. Order a batch of branded

network of people — such as people who

products and make a note of the date you

live near your store, but who may not have

start handing them out to customers. After a

heard of your brand yet. As there are many

other item of furniture can enhance their

certain period (try six months), check your

dedicated furniture shops, as well as large

living environment or make their lives easier

revenue and repeat sales to see if this tactic

department stores that sell furniture items,

and more efficient. For example, a modern

has made a positive difference and is worth

you need to target people as directly as

glass and chrome dining table can help

further investment.

possible – door-to-door marketing can

a kitchen look more up-to-date without


needing to redecorate – while a sideboard

Tell people how each table, chair, and any

with multiple compartments, drawers and

2. Not networking real estate agents If you aren’t networking with estate agents

4. Sending out boring advertisements

cabinets can help keep things in an easy-to-

to help promote your furniture business, you

Brochures, pull-up banners and other forms

find place, as well as ensure that clutter is

should be. A poll taken by Exposure Property

of print advertising are excellent ways to

out of sight.

Marketing discovered that photographers in the business of selling property believe that furniture makes a great difference in how easy it is to sell a home. To help boost your brand, liaise with estate agents and companies to see if you can come to an agreement on offering pieces of your furniture to help make their empty properties look more inviting. This should, in turn, help advertise your products and could develop into a long-term arrangement. 3. Ignoring the benefits of door-to-door marketing The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) conducted extensive research into leaflet distribution and its effects on its audience. It discovered that almost 90% of people recalled getting door-drop mail — which was more than any other marketing channel. Adopt this marketing technique, and you can advertise your brand to a specific

FN354_Pages.indd 48

24/08/2018 15:49


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24/08/2018 23/08/2018 15:49 09:03

50 | Resources

5. Using low-quality digital imagery

Whether in print or on your social media

media daily, according to digital strategy

What about when you’re advertising online?

pages, high-resolution images that show

and design firm Sumo Heavy Industries.

Although print is highly effective, there is,

the best of your products will work the best

This is a lot of people who may be put off

of course, scope to promote your brand via

to create sales.

buying from you if they see a negative review. As Jay Baers, social media and

the internet. 6. Not responding to queries and

customer services expert, claims: “A lack

to advertising furniture. According to a

complaints on social media

of response says, ‘We don’t care about you

study by digital agency Bright North, poor

A bad review is always difficult to deal with

very much’.”

resolutions lower the chance of a customer

– but in 2018, platforms like Facebook and

opting for your brand over others, so you

Twitter can make negative feedback more

trained in customer service in charge of your

must ensure you go for quality.

detrimental, which will make promoting

social media channels.

Images are very important when it comes

Imagery in advertising is hugely important in marketing today. A report

It’s a good idea to put someone who is

Taking this action will increase the

your furniture brand tougher. Social media is a great way to advertise

chance that any issues are resolved swiftly

by Social Media Examiner discovered that

your furniture for free, but it’s also an

and positively, helping your brand maintain

almost three quarters of social media

excellent way to engage with customers and

its good name.

marketers employ visual assets when

potential customers.

promoting. Not everyone consumes all

If you receive a complaint online, you

In the furniture industry, creating the

their advertising via billboards and print

must answer it as quickly as possible – the

right marketing campaign and avoiding

magazines in 2018 – are you on board with

longer it’s there, the more annoyed the

common mistakes can take your brand to

the trend to ensure your furniture business

person will be and the greater the chance

the next level.

is capturing the audience that spends time

that it’ll be shared.

Avoid the above pitfalls and make 2018 a

Remember that 72% of people use social



THE AUTHOR Gary Peeling is the CEO of award-winning London- and Sunderland-based commercial print specialist, Where The Trade Buys, which utilises the latest technology and software to produce low-cost volume print jobs, effectively and quickly.

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FN354_Pages.indd 50

Steve Straw Email: Tel: 01207 279 520

24/08/2018 15:49




COWHIDES HanLinSep18.indd 151 FN354_Pages.indd


REINDEER 09:49 24/08/2018 15:49

52 | Resources

The importance of making a good first impression has never been more vital than in the social media-facing society in which furniture retailers now operate, says Mark Williamson. There’s nowhere to hide from bad customer reviews, and so much to gain from glowing testimonials – so retailers really should reassess their approaches to services such as on-hold marketing …

Making the right customer service call Interior decor has never been more on trend.

deliver on time, answer product queries and

Are you sitting comfortably?

You can barely switch on the TV without

provide them with exceptional aftersales

Putting callers on hold doesn’t need to be a

tuning into a home makeover show or


negative encounter. Instead, it represents a

renovation series. Newsagent shelves are

If a customer is answered by an impolite

unique opportunity to provide informative

or uninformed employee, or if a call is

dialogue that keeps callers engaged – tell

left unanswered or put on hold for an

them about seasonal o�ers, finance deals

for furniture retailers to jump on the

unacceptable length of time, you could

such as interest-free credit periods and

bandwagon and help people fall back in love

create a negative perception – no matter

payment plans, or new ranges added to your

with their homes – and grow their business.

how stylish or well-crafted your furniture


packed with house and garden titles. This trend represents a huge opportunity

The furniture sector has always

may be. The damage is done, and your

Give customers added reassurance that

understood that quality, well-designed

reputation is marred after just one phone

they are dealing with a reputable company

products and exceptional customer service


by reinforcing your award accreditations or

are integral to business success. But the

In fact, a survey carried out for PHMG by

biographies about designers and how you source your materials and fabrics.

more savvy business owners also recognise

TNS Kantar revealed that almost three-

that the customer experience, from the first

quarters (73%) of Brits won’t do repeat

product enquiry through to delivery and

business with a company if their initial call

of products to use for maintenance (for

aftersales service, is all part of the process

isn’t handled to their satisfaction.

example, leather polishers) or tips on how

Give general advice about what kind

to best care for outdoor furniture during the

in making sure your customers leave happy, return and recommend you to their friends

You never get a second chance to make a

and family.

first impression

winter. The promotional opportunities of on-hold

Put yourself in your customer’s shoes. How

marketing are endless, providing brand-

Make your customers feel at home

frustrated do you feel when greeted by

congruent and timely messages which

Just because you’re not available to pick up

monotonous beeps, repetitive ‘please hold’

perfectly represent your business.

24/7, it doesn’t mean your telephone can’t

messages or even silence?

still do a job in making customers feel at

The same survey revealed that 38% of

Home is where your story begins

firms still leave customers listening to

On-hold marketing can transform previous

nothing but generic music, while a further

‘dead air’ into a highly-targeted interaction.

first interaction with potential customers,

29% leave callers in silence and 28% subject

Unlike other costly advertising which often

and should be treated as instrumental in

them to beeps.

falls on deaf ears or goes unseen, on-

home with your brand. The telephone is often your company’s

ensuring they buy their next sofa or dining table from you – not your competitors. An Englishman’s home is his castle. And

Almost 30 seconds is enough time to

hold messages allow you to engage with

make callers hang up, wondering which

customers – encouraging them to bring

retailer to call next.

your furnishings into their homes.

he wants the best quality and most stylish

It has even been shown to reduce caller

furnishings to adorn it. Furnishings are a

hang-ups by 79%, while also decreasing the

considered, and very personal, purchase, and people invest a lot of time researching interior decor trends – and undoubtedly refer to online forums to get insights into who are the best companies to buy from, and who to avoid. As such, customers will only buy from you if you can give inspiring design advice,

“Almost 30 seconds is enough time to make callers hang up, wondering which retailer to call next”

perceived waiting time. Your customer will feel reassured that they are dealing with a reputable company. And you will have another happy customer who can subsequently recommend you to their friends when they show o� your furnishings during their next dinner party or Instagram post.

THE AUTHOR Mark Williamson is the sales and marketing director at audio branding specialist PHMG, which blends creative copy, voice artistry and brand-matched music to transform caller experience.

FN354_Pages.indd 52

24/08/2018 16:46

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24/08/2018 15:49

56 | Profile

Riaz Ahmed, Sweet Dreams’ founder and MD

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24/08/2018 15:50

Profile | 57

Legacies (are made of this) From a small bed factory on Burnley’s New Hall Street to a manufacturing enterprise turning over £21m, Sweet Dreams has come a long way in the last 30 years. In a story of evolution, investment and family values across three decades, Paul Farley celebrates the humble bed brand’s anniversary … “Their knowledge and experience of the bed industry is second to none. They’re also very flexible and reliable, which is a real strength in our trading partnership.” That’s a quote from Jo-Anne Fortune, bed buyer at Shop Direct, a 10-year business partner of Sweet Dreams and just one of a stockist roster featuring the likes of Next, DFS, Bensons and Dunelm, plus over 900 independent accounts, including 65 AIS members. British manufacture, fast lead times and solid construction combine to make Sweet Dreams a tempting value proposition for any retailer looking for strong lines, reliable service and good margins.

Three generations of the Ahmed family, from left – Imran, Adnan, Riaz, Majid and Jamal

And although the company’s bread and butter is its expansive bed offer – which comprises eight divan collections (over 70 models) plus adjustable, children’s and contract beds, bed frames and sofabeds – it also supplies an extensive range of cabinet furniture and upholstery. And, aside from its exclusive online range, Eden, all of these products are available only to bricks-andmortar retailers. Joining the portfolio this month is the Anniversary collection – a range of four divans which offer a mix of traditional and pocket springs, microquilted panels, damask

Triumph Cashmere 2000, from the Anniversary collection

Gordon Birtwistle MP opens Sweet Dreams’ Primrose Mill extension in 2013

,and several colour and filling choices. company is able to promise rapid fulfilment.

land adjoining its Primrose Mill building in

decades of expertise in keenly priced luxury

Its made-to-order lines can be deployed in

2011, to which it added a £3m extension to

sleep products, and will be launched at the

10 working days, and stocked items in just

increase its production and storage capacity,

NBF Bed Show this month. To mark the

3-5, while a DHD option is also available.

and introduce a showroom, in 2013.

The collection is the pinnacle of three

occasion, Sweet Dreams will even be giving

Despite two major fires hindering

Re-investment is a recurring theme at

selected models away to stockists in a

progress, and the rise and fall of its sister

Sweet Dreams. In its last financial year

monthly prize draw.

brand, Comfort Zone Sofas, the company

alone, investment in premises, machinery

has steadily expanded and refined its

and vehicles amounted to more than

manufactures the bulk of its products in

manufacturing footprint in Burnley over

£875,000, proving that the company is

its Burnley factories. During peak periods,

the years to become one of the area’s most

certainly here for the long term – as its key

these facilities turn out some 3000 divans,

valued employers.

personnel can attest.

A proudly British business, Sweet Dreams

4000 mattresses and 1500 headboards each week, and this prodigious output means the

Perhaps the most notable development in the company’s history was the purchase of

Sweet Dreams is a family business at heart. Founder and MD Riaz Ahmed (see boxout), an unassuming yet ambitious entrepreneur, oversees an operation that

“The company has steadily expanded and refined its manufacturing footprint in Burnley over the years to become one of the area’s most valued employers”

FN354_Pages.indd 57

now employs three generations of family members – Riaz himself, his three sons Majid (manufacturing director), Adnan (operations director) and Imran (accounts manager), and grandson Jamal, who has embarked on a two-year training

24/08/2018 15:50

58 | Profile


programme at the company.

“The last 30 years have flown by! It

confer benefits through their fillings and

Dreams at the age of 16, says: “I was

doesn’t seem that long since I was starting


the first of the siblings to come into the

out manufacturing headboards in Nelson,

business, and this is my 26th year (I feel

and then opening a factory in Burnley to

to see, though, has been the industry’s

really old when I say that!). I’ve done more

make divans,” says MD Riaz Ahmed.

determination to make beds safe and

Majid, who started working at Sweet

“The change I’ve been most pleased

healthy for consumers, and to create

or less every job going – from loading and

“We’ve progressed a lot since those

unloading and machine operating to work

days, and overall it’s been a very happy

a level playing field for responsible

in all office areas. And it’s great that my son

and rewarding journey.

manufacturers. A lot of thanks have to

Jamal has come on board – we are following

“The people I’ve met and worked with

go to the NBF for this. They’ve helped

along the way – customers and suppliers

tremendously with marketing too, and

as well as agents and especially our staff –

with training sales staff in recent years,

manager Jackie McGarvey, joined Sweet

have contributed to this, and it’s a source

but in my view the most important

Dreams in 1993, after working in sales

of great pleasure to me that Sweet Dreams

industry innovation has been the NBF

for Repose Bedding and Elite Bedding.

now provides employment for hundreds of

audit and associated accreditation. I’m

Over the years, Jackie’s commercial nous,

local people.

very proud that Sweet Dreams was one of

a similar route.” Perhaps its best-known staffer, general

determination and warmth have won her

“Of course, it’s also very gratifying

respect from the company’s staff and the

having seen members of my family join the company and contribute to its success.

TIMELINE 1988 – Sweet Dreams founded, starts manufacturing headboards in Nelson,

the first to get behind this initiative. “I’d like to take this opportunity to say a sincere thank you to all who’ve helped

“I’ve seen a lot of changes in the

make Sweet Dreams what it is today, and

industry, too – not least, the fashions,

to let you know how much I look forward

and how people are opting for bigger beds,

to working alongside you in the coming

beds with more storage, and beds that


Lancashire, before later moving to a bed factory on New Hall Street, Burnley

passed away in 2014. Stephen described

1998 – Turnover reaches £5.4m, 96

his time with Sweet Dreams as “the most

employed across 50,000ft2

enjoyable part” of his career.

2005 – Sister company Comfort Zone

stockists a product line that encapsulates

Today, Sweet Dreams strives to bring its

Sofas launched, with a focus on leather

the extensive expertise and passion behind

upholstery. Fire destroys one of Sweet

the business. A notable success in recent

Dreams’ warehouses, plus several million

years is its Well Being collection, which

pounds’-worth of stock, diverting

was designed to meet today’s demand

investment required for the new brand

for health-promoting, lifestyle-oriented models, and has proved a real winner for the

2007 – Investment in warehousing

company. Take the Aloe Soothe 2000 model,

totalling £2m 2008 – Turnover reaches £17.3m, 222 employed across 150,000ft


Sweet Dreams’ general manager, Jackie McGarvey

for example – launched in September 2017, this model alone has generated an impressive £206,000 in sales to June this year.

2011 – Land adjoining Primrose Mill purchased. Living and dining room furniture launched 2013 – Major extension to Primrose Mill facility completed. Joined AIS buying group 2014 – Second iteration of Comfort Zone Sofas launched

industry in general. “When I first joined, Majid had just left

Having supplied everything from cane sofabeds to fabric upholstery over the years,

school and started work at his father’s

there are few product areas Sweet Dreams

company,” says Jackie. “The other children

hasn’t been brave enough to tackle, and the

would come in through the summer

vast majority of its launches have gone on to

holidays, and it has been a pleasure to see

become prominent lines across the nation’s

them grow into the people they are today.


Riaz and his sons have always made me feel part of the family.” As well as her wider team, Jackie is

There’s no sign of the company’s ambition slowing, either – Sweet Dreams’ stockists have come to expect a steady

2015 – Scholefield Mill (165,000ft2)

ably supported by sales manager Nick

flow of new designs, backed up by credible


Williams, who came on board in 2013, and

quality guarantees and good levels of

has helped generate considerable growth


2016 – Marsden Mill (70,000ft2) purchased. Comfort Zone Sofas is dissolved 2018 – Celebrates three decades of business growth. Turnover reaches £21m, 300 employed across 400,000ft2

FN354_Pages.indd 58

since. “It’s always a team enterprise,” he

Given its unstoppable evolution and

says, “and having the best people and the

family-led DNA, that the company has

right products have enabled us to grow

achieved such impressive growth over the

significantly over these last few years.”

last three decades is no surprise – most

No list of Sweet Dreams’ dramatis

would bet on there being at least three

personae would be complete without

decades more in Burnley’s beloved bed

Stephen Boyd, the company’s highly capable


general manager from 1995-2004, who

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24/08/2018 14:37 15:50 20/08/2018

60 | Profile

Activ Gel Pocket 2800

Sleep well, be well – introducing Activsleep Leading global bed brand Sealy UK recently launched its Activsleep collection. Available in 11 designs, this new range is currently in selected retailers across the country, and is aimed at promoting healthy living through healthy sleep.

Innovative combinations of sleep technology have been used across Sealy UK’s Activsleep collection to ensure a cool and supportive sleep environment. The collection features Purotex microcapsules which release friendly bacteria into the fabric of the mattresses to clean up allergens, reduce humidity and create a pleasant sleeping environment. Simultaneously, Adaptive technology uses the body’s energy to regulate temperature. The range includes several key products. First is the Activ Gel Pocket 2800, which is ideal for those who struggle to get a good night’s sleep, as it features Geltex, a combination of elastic gel and air-permeable foam designed for maximum comfort. Geltex offers pressure relief, body support and breathability. Combining 1400 pocket springs

FN354_Pages.indd 60

Activ Pocket Memory 1000

24/08/2018 15:50

Profile | 61

with 1400 mini pockets, the superior spring unit promotes a supportive and revitalising sleep. Next is the Activ Pocket Memory 2400, a pocket-sprung mattress, created with memory foam for greater comfort. Key ingredients include Sealy’s Smart Fibres, which help prevent overheating and create a cool, dry sleeping environment. Temperature- and moisture-responsive, Adaptive technology keeps the sleeper cool and dry, whilst Purotex releases probiotics into the fabric, preventing the proliferation of any bugs. There is also the Activ Ortho Extra Firm, a mattress designed to minimise partner disturbance through the use of Sealy’s PostureTech Zero Deflection

Geltex Pocket 1400

(ZD) system, which combats weight and movement in order to avoid disruption. To mark the launch of this unique

Odudu, top yoga blogger Steffy White, and

range caters directly to those who want to

collection, Sealy teamed up with some of the

conditioning expert and Instagram star, Phil

wake up restored, ready to seize the day –

best-known wellness and health influencers

Learney – and there are many more on the

whether they’re working, enjoying time with

in the country in order to better understand


friends, exercising or simply reflecting.

the link between good sleep and a healthy, happy lifestyle. Telling their individual stories through

Neil Robinson, sales and marketing

“We also recognise that an active lifestyle

director at Sealy, says: “More than ever,

can mean different things for different

people are quite rightly viewing sleep as a

people, which is why the collection is varied

Sealy’s new World of Wellness online portal

crucial factor when it comes to their overall

in design.”

are TV personality and wellbeing expert, AJ

health and wellbeing. This exciting new

Activsleep Pocket Memory 2400

FN354_Pages.indd 61

24/08/2018 15:51

62 | Profile



Growing from strength to strength Steens for Kids was launched worldwide in 2009, and has since gone on to be a resounding success for the supplier, featuring consistently at the top of its sales figures … With its unique feature – Steens for Kids

retail partners. This ability to offer ex-

launch internationally at the fair. All areas

offers the ability to take a starter bed and

stock collections, or to design, develop and

of domestic furniture – bedroom, living

convert it into toddler, child and teen beds,

produce lines from first concept, is one of

and dining – will be covered, with new,

and back again – Steens for Kids has proved

the business’ real strengths.

globally-inspired designs.

popular with families and a commercial success for Steens’ retail partners.

Consider also that there are no

Also included will be stylish and

middlemen, and everything is manufactured

commercial new children’s bedroom

within the Denmark factory – other

furniture, ensuring continued success in this

it was named Best Children’s Furniture

factories’ products are never supplied as

key area of the business – an area Steens

Manufacturer 2018 by Interiors Monthly

Steens products.

The range’s ongoing success is such that

magazine this summer. Steens Group UK MD Alan Cozens commented: “This is fantastic

With imm cologne not far away, Steens is now busy developing new ranges to

intends to grow significantly.

T 01489 778890

recognition for the skills and expertise of all involved at Steens. Of course, it starts with a great commercial product, but it takes so much to arrive in the position we find

Steens for Kids highsleeper

ourselves – from the design studio to the master craftsmen in the development team, the production teams and sales teams, each working together to deliver consistently great product and service. “Backing this up is our commitment to ensure all our products comply with the relevant safety standards and our materials are ethically sourced. It’s a great combination that’s a proven hit with our retail partners.”


Steens for Kids is not the only children’s furniture produced at the company’s factory


in Denmark – many lines are developed


specifically as own-label product for Steens’

FN354_Pages.indd 62

24/08/2018 15:51




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24/08/2018 13/08/2018 15:51 09:42

64 | Profile

Assessing a bunkbed’s safety

Trade turns to SATRA in testing times SATRA celebrates its centenary next year. Founded in 1919 as a specialist footwear research association, the test centre has grown to become a UK authority on shoes and personal protective equipment (PPE). Yet it is also equipped to handle more general products, and furniture and floorcoverings are a significant part of its business. Paul Farley visited SATRA’s cutting-edge facility in Kettering this summer to find out more …

Rising consumer expectation means product quality has never been so important. With sizeable risks associated with product failure (I’ve heard my share of horror stories), it’s no surprise that companies are increasingly turning to reputable test centres for help. Operating from a sizeable HQ in Kettering which incorporates half a dozen dedicated laboratories, covering everything from flammability testing to chemical assessment – plus a satellite facility in Dongguan, China – SATRA’s services are in high demand. Last year, the company’s testing arm

“With sizeable risks associated with product failure, it’s no surprise that companies are increasingly turning to reputable test centres for help”

hiss of hydraulics as we begin our tour by entering the structural testing laboratory, where various chairs, sofas, tables, cabinets and mattresses are being squeezed, pushed and pulled in different directions. These load tests – be they of the fatigue, static, or shock variety – are all applied by machinery of SATRA’s own making, and delivered in line with the appropriate domestic or commercial standards to ensure their strength and durability. “Most customers are putting longer guarantees on their products,” says Geoff Bindley, head of SATRA’s Furniture and

turned in a record performance, prompting it to make ongoing investments in

doubled, while chair testing has also been

Floorcoverings department, as he points

technology and staff – such as the addition

extremely busy,” says the department’s

to several of the tireless contraptions, “so

of a new universal fatigue testing machine,

head, Geoff Bindley, when he greets me in

demand is growing for our services. Some

which has doubled the capacity of its

the company’s well-appointed reception

80-90% of our furniture testing equipment

furniture and floorcoverings department,

area. “This is a very exciting time in

is in use at any one time, and many of these

and the more recent appointment of senior

furniture and floorcoverings testing and

machines run 24/7 – across an assessment

team leader Johnny Worthington.

certification at SATRA, as there is potential

period of 14 weeks, they may do anything up

in the whole market.”

to half a million cycles.”

“So far this year, table and bed testing work has tripled, and cabinet testing has

FN354_Pages.indd 64

The reception gives way to the steady

The tests simulate real-life scenarios,

24/08/2018 15:51

Profile | 65

from general wear and tear to sudden impact – for example, aside from being sat upon, a dining chair may be dragged, pushed from side to side, leaned or stood upon – and if a supplier or retailer wishes to comply with the standards and minimise any risk of returns, their product should be able to take the abuse. SATRA’s various laboratories are accredited by UKAS, and work to ISO 17025, so have been entrusted by major players across various industries (client confidentiality precludes SATRA from naming names) to deliver reliable, independent product validation – and these clients are increasingly seeking SATRA’s own seal of approval, through its Diamond Product Certification Programme. Yet this area is just the start of the tour. A key strength of SATRA is its expertise across numerous – often complementary – parts of the industry, as I begin to discover upon entering the flammability testing lab. Large enough to test even a fullsized mattress, the facility can execute the pricy – yet invaluable – processes necessary to ensure compliance with the current Furniture and Furnishings (Fire Safety) Regulations, and I’m treated to a demonstration of how quickly foam burns when free from the fire-retardant chemicals demanded by UK law. “Although there’s not necessarily any

SATRA is equipped to test the foam durability of children’s and adult mattresses

Repeated pressure is applied to chair backs and seats

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66 | Profile

“Many of the test mechanisms developed for other sectors during SATRA’s long history can, and have been, applied to furniture” and interested parties can get a taste of these by attending one of the company’s many seminars. Flammability seminars, for example, take place throughout the year – the next are on 11th October and 6th December – while a Furniture Safety seminar, which provides information on the concepts of general product safety, Fire Safety Regulations and an introduction into the REACH legislations

Applying one of many mattress flammability tests

on restricted substances, will be held at SATRA’s headquarters on 8th November. “Some test houses will only deal with

direct correlation, we did experience an

roof, potentially making SATRA a one-stop-

you if you know exactly what you want,”

uplift in demand for fire testing in the

shop for every furniture testing need – and

says Andrew, as I depart. “At SATRA, we

wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster,” says

there’s even a new building opening nearby

employ people who can provide advice

technologist, Andrew Munn.

which will house the engineering equipment

on the relevant standards, whatever your

SATRA uses to manufacture and maintain its

requirement – and we can tailor our services

own machinery.

to meet specific demands, making the

We move on through rooms in which finishing tests are carried out to assess the damage of impact, heat, and stains on

At the heart of SATRA’s offer is a

service fit around you, rather than the other

veneers and foils, to SATRA’s expansive

comprehensive training and consultancy

way around.”

footwear department, where it becomes

service, designed to help the industry

T 01536 410000

clear that many of the test mechanisms

perform at the highest possible standards,

developed for other sectors during SATRA’s long history can, and have been, applied to furniture. Customers seeking upholstery testing and certification invariably discover that this department’s fabric and leather nous is invaluable in assessing a cover’s flexibility, resistance to abrasion and colourfast properties – the latter being of particular importance, given the potential for litigation which can arise from clothing stains. Next up is the chemical laboratory, which takes testing down to a molecular level. Since the introduction of the REACH EU regulation in 2006, this department has experienced huge growth in demand – and, again, there’s relevance to the furniture sector, with testing taking place to guarantee the safety of finishes on nursery furniture, and, elsewhere, analysing leathers for the presence of chromium-6, an unwelcome by-product of the tanning

S w a

process, which can irritate the skin in large enough concentrations. All these diverse capabilities, delivered by some 200 employees, are housed under one

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Paul Farley is introduced to the upholstery testing machines by head of department, Geoff Bindley

24/08/2018 15:51


It can only be‌

Shown here in a 4ft6 Pocket Zero mattress, with a Ren style base in Memphis camel, and Stratford Floorstanding headboard


+ 44 (0) 1924 454 678 FN354_Pages.indd HighgateAug18.indd 67 1

24/08/2018 20/07/2018 15:51 11:46

68 | Profile

Seasonal selection broadens stylish offer With the autumn shows fast approaching, Gallery Direct has been busy developing new products for Autumn Fair, the Bed Show and the Autumn Furniture Show … Autumn Fair (stands 2C05/B04) will see

Autumn Furniture Show (hall 2) will see

experience to design and produce desirable

the launch of Gallery’s autumn/winter 2018

the new seasonal collection featured, along

yet affordable quality pieces.

collection, which features over 430 new

with a selection of furniture and beds from

products including occasional furniture,

current ranges.

mirrors, lighting, textiles and home decor.

The new collection has been developed

“Developing a new collection of this size takes a lot of hard work from the team, but is vital to keep our offer fresh and so stay

A selection of products from the current

to bring even more choice to Gallery’s

ahead of trends and the competition. We are

catalogue will also be on display.

already-extensive offering. The occasional

looking forward to the shows – it is great to

At the Bed Show, a new collection of

furniture comprises an eclectic selection,

get feedback from customers and to see the

Hudson Living sofa beds will be exhibited

all designed to add style and personality

industry’s response to our new products.”

alongside a range of divans, mattresses,

to rooms – from eye-catching cabinets to

T 01795 439159

headboards and bedsteads – while the

unusual coffee tables and elegant chairs, the

range offers something to suit all tastes and

Serrano armchair

interior styles. The new lighting range offers an array of pendant lights and table lamps, while the new selection of mirrors brings fresh new looks to the catalogue. Gallery’s rug collection, which was launched in January, has proved to be successful, and so is being extended to offer more choice – as is the supplier’s relaxed seating selection, with more pouffes and floor cushions being introduced. A new selection of home decor products including clocks, candles and other accessories completes the line-up. Mat Penney, product director, comments: “We are determined to continue leading the marketplace by developing new products, using the team’s expert knowledge and

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FN Aug

GET THE LOOK FOR A/W 2018 Visit us at Autumn Fair and The Autumn Furniture Show this year for the first look at our exclusive new collections for AW18.

AUTUMN FAIR NEC Birmingham 2 - 5 Sep 18 Hall 02 Stand 2C05 - B04

THE AUTUMN FURNITURE SHOW Stoneleigh Park Exhibition Centre 2 - 3 Oct 18 Hall 2

2- 5 SEP 2018 Hall 02 | Stand 2C05-B04

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70 | Profile

Balance 2 in champagne and Falcone lime

Gliding onto the UK radar Russia’s Impex Furniture, which specialises in upholstered armchairs, rocking chairs, gliders and related products, has introduced its Glider armchair brand to the UK market …

According to Impex Furniture, rocking

components; reliable swing mechanisms;

chairs – and gliders in particular – are now

and a broad selection of colours and

considered a must-have piece of furniture in


many European households, thanks to their

Available quickly through sizeable stocks,

suitability for people needing to relax after

at competitive prices (and in demand all-

a long day’s work, or mothers trying to rock

year round), Impex Furniture’s offering

their babies to sleep, for example.

would suit any retailer looking to broaden

Adhering to a philosophy of comfort and

their offer and maximise returns from their

warmth, Impex Furniture strives to offer its

floorspace – anyone interested in being one

customers superior quality models, all made

of the first to bring this unique collection of

from high-quality materials, and backed up

innovative Glider armchairs, rocking chairs

by strong service capabilities.

and more to the UK market should contact

Its models, which have been

Impex Furniture directly or visit its website

manufactured by the company’s dedicated

to find out more.

teams for more than 10 years, benefit from:

T 0074 932 593111

natural wooden frames and high quality

Glider armchairs are produced in Impex Furniture’s state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities

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What is Glider? • A new technology of rocking chair with a reliable pendulum mechanism providing a new level of comfort • More exciting than an ordinary armchair, much cheaper than a recliner • From leading manufacturer of rocking chairs and gliders

T: +7 903 632 8934 MebelImpexWoodJuly18.indd 1 FN354_Pages.indd 71

18/06/2018 24/08/2018 16:05 15:51

Central Furniture Manufacturing Ltd For a Full Colour Brochure please call 0121 766 8110

Vogue Range Mussel & Gloss Noche Marino Mulliner Works, 154 Bordesley Green Road, Birmingham, B8 1BY Tel Fax Email Web

: : : :

0121 766 8110 0121 766 7450

FN354_Pages.indd 72 Central Furniture Manufacturing/CFM Advert.indd 1

24/08/2018 27/07/2017 09:43 15:51

Central Furniture Manufacturing Ltd For a Full Colour Brochure please call 0121 766 8110

Vogue Range Mussel & Gloss Grey Mulliner Works, 154 Bordesley Green Road, Birmingham, B8 1BY Tel Fax Email Web

: : : :

0121 766 8110 0121 766 7450

Newport Range Mussel

FN354_Pages.indd Central Furniture73 Manufacturing/CFM Advert 2.indd 1

Vogue Range

Nova Range

Walnut & Gloss Black


24/08/2018 27/07/2017 15:51 09:44

74 | Manchester Furniture Show Review

MANCHESTER SHOW TURNS SPORTING CHANCE INTO SUCCESS The three-day Manchester Furniture Show ended on 17th July, overcoming a slow trading backdrop and sporting fixture clashes to deliver a performance that impressed visitors and exhibitors alike …

New exhibitors and a positive vibe

the opportunity to see a large variety of

many impressed by the calibre of the

throughout helped lift this year’s summer

products from exclusive brands including

companies and products they saw – coupled

show, resulting in an overall attendance

Italia Living, Kesterport, Venjakob, Chelsom

with the relaxed atmosphere of the event

figure of just over 5000 - marginally down

and Sits.

and its city centre location.

on the last year’s attendance, reports

Many of the MidPoint exhibitors reported

Show director Cleere Scamell comments:

organiser Clarion Events Group, attributing

strong results from their first outing. Spink

“The addition of MidPoint, the enhanced

the drop to the concurrent World Cup Final,

& Edgar’s sales director, Tina Reilly, said:

visitor marketing activity and investment

the Men’s Wimbledon Final and the hot

“We weren’t sure what to expect, but are

in our hosted VIP scheme, all helped attract


thrilled with the buyers we’ve seen and the

a larger number of influential and high-

positive reaction to our sofas. The show has

spending buyers than ever before.

The addition of MidPoint and the higherend brands that came with it further raised

a lovely feel and we will definitely be back

the profile of this year’s show, and helped

next year.”

reinforce the show’s importance for buyers

In the Main Hall many exhibitors also

“It proved to be a good decision, as many of the buyers taking part were impressed by the quality of the exhibitors and the

seeking new upholstery, cabinet, beds,

reported their satisfaction with the event.

products on show, and many placed large

mattresses and accessories for autumn and

Steve Lamb, UK sales director for Vida

orders for that important autumn trading

Christmas, across the full breadth of market

Living, comments: “We’ve had our best-



ever Manchester with great sales across a

Several exhibitors have requested more

broad spectrum of products. We’ve seen new

space at the 2019 event, and Clarion reports

in buyers from large retail and group

buyers – especially from Ireland and high-

that re-bookings for next year are already

stores who had not previously been part

end UK stores – and we couldn’t be more

high, at over 80%.

of Manchester Furniture Show’s VIP buyer

pleased. There is no hesitation in booking

The show returns to Manchester Central

programme, including representatives

our space – hopefully a larger space – for

on 14-16th July 2019. Read on to discover a

from CFC Interiors, Casey’s Furniture,

next year.”

sample of the new product launched at this

MidPoint proved successful in drawing

Home Designs, Julian Foye, Meubles and Cubbin & Bregazzi, which all welcomed

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The extended VIP hosted buyers scheme brought more buyers to the event, with

year’s edition …

24/08/2018 15:51

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76 | Manchester Furniture Show Review

WESTBRIDGE DEFINES ITS OWN DESTINY With so many distractions in play, this year’s Manchester Furniture Show was always destined to prove a difficult draw, says Westbridge Furniture’s sales director, Nichola Bell – yet, she explains, a combination of strong product and supportive customers meant the upholstery specialist enjoyed a successful show nonetheless …


“Manchester Furniture Show was always

travelled some distance from Scotland and

something that traditional fixed corners

going to be a tough gig this year,” says

Ireland to support the Manchester Furniture

in the market do not permit. A choice of

Nichola. “The ingredients for a poor trade


different seat interiors allows the customer

show – from the tough trading period

“More importantly, our new ranges were

to choose their comfort level, along with over 80 fabric choices.

and Brexit uncertainties behind it, to

very well received – and my earlier concerns

the competing football World Cup and

were completely unfounded, as we had a

Wimbledon finals, and, of course, the

very successful show, actually topping last

good-value family comfort. With great

glorious sunshine – were more than evident.

year’s performance.

proportions, comfort and style, this

“Yet, despite my concerns, we were

“The real winners from the show were

“Next was Harrison, which offers

very understandable shape provides an opportunity for volume sales.

excited to put another great stand together,

the Jude, Harrison and Lilly ranges. Jude is

and introduce three new upholstery designs

a brand new, fully modular corner group,

and a selection of new fabrics for our

offered in a beautifully soft-handled pastel

the Elements range is popular due to its


story.It offers great value, and, importantly,

perfect proportions, offering a slim arm and

the flexibility for customers to customise the

ample seating space. It features five sizes

sofas to their homes’ unique requirements,

of sofa, chaise, corner and sofabed options,

“It was a delight to see many of our loyal customers – especially those that had

“Then there is Lilly. The bestseller from

and is a popular choice for apartments, holiday homes and smaller spaces. “Manchester Furniture Show has proved to be a successful show for us, and it was great to see the MidPoint exhibitors there this year. “I would like to thank our customers for their continued support, and we promise to keep bringing you more exciting and commercial product to buy. A selection of excellent Westbridge product will next be available to view at autumn’s Long Point show, and the South West Furniture Show, both taking place this month.” Harrison

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Full pag

New Nova Dining Collection From Only £299.99



Launching Grey Manhattan Full Range at the Autumn Fair


Hall 02 Stand: 2L20,2L21-K20 For further information visit our showroom or contact us on: 01162875288

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78 | Manchester Furniture Show Review

THE ONLY WAY IS UP Bluebone reports that its introduction of new industrial and Kleo-branded ranges at the Manchester Furniture Show went down much better than expected, successfully lifting the Kleo brand further towards the high-end industrial market …

By combining dusty gold and copper accents with pure, raw boatwood and clean, dark

showing off a piece of boat. Bluebone continues to enjoy success from

With large food-sharing platters proving a popular complement, and a variety of

steel frames – paired with luxury side

its mid-century modern-styled range, Oslo.

industrial, modern and natural stools still

tables – Bluebone gave retailers on the

The company says that the timeless appeal

to come, Bluebone’s team is excited by the

look out for a touch of glamour plenty

of retro furniture, combined with Oslo’s use

possibilities generated by this trend.

of opportunity to source show-stopping

of natural materials at affordable prices, has

While Bluebone will be present at Autumn

models this summer.

made it one of this year’s bestselling ranges.

Fair this month (stand 2F03/E02), interested

The supplier reports that its new Kleo

Bluebone’s expanded bar assortment

parties can request a show van visit, or

ranges – Pure, Fokus, Look and Nako –

has proved another winning line. The

register on the company’s website for trade

were all well received. Fittingly, the Look

supplier says that bars and barstools are

access to its product and price information.

range creates real focal points – such as

proving today’s must-have items, and

T 0161 330 8959

shelf units, and a glass-topped coffee table

its birdcage and boatwood bar fit right in.

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Come and see us at Autumn Fair 2-5 Sep Hall 2 F03/E02


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River Mill II, Park Road, Dukinfield, Cheshire SK16 5PD TEL.: 0161-330 8959, Facebook: BlueboneImports Instagram:

24/08/2018 15/08/2018 15:52 12:03

80 | Manchester Furniture Show Review

At the show, the British Furniture Manufacturers (BFM, www. brought attention to the launch of a new showroom opportunity for members at its new head office in Long Eaton. Visitors to the stand also had the chance to meet the BFM’s new marketing and administration co-ordinator, Annie Porter, who was on hand to provide help on key issues facing the industry such as sustainability and exports. MD Jackie Bazeley comments: “The Manchester Furniture Show provided us with a great platform to reveal our new showroom opportunity, receiving lots of positive feedback. The show also presented us with the opportunity to catch up with contacts and meet new ones from across the industry.”


Despite the difficult trading times faced by the industry, Buoyant Upholstery (01282 691631, reports that it enjoyed excellent results from the Manchester Furniture Show, with the launch of its new models – Champ, Stella, Tizzy and Salute – extremely well received. MD Mike Aramayo says: “This year has so far proved to be extremely difficult for everybody involved in the trade – retailers and manufacturers alike – but Buoyant is excellently placed to be able to ride out the storm and continue to provide the assurance of quality, value-for-money product backed up by excellent levels of service.”

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Jackie Bazeley on the BFM stand

20/06/2018 16:36

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ALPHA DESIGNS UPHOLSTERY LIMITED T: 01902 492937 F: 01902 493700 E: Unit 1, Stag Industrial Estate, Oxford Street, Bilston, Wolverhampton WV14 7HZ

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82 | Manchester Furniture Show Review

SECONIQUE MOVES ON WITH NEW PRODUCT Seconique, which has now fully relocated to its new premises in Pendeford, Wolverhampton, launched a swathe of impressive value-for-money products at the Manchester Furniture Show …

Athens table and chairs, plus Charisma shelf unit

Among the new launches was the Athens

in Seconique’s core collection for many

drawer chest; and a dressing table set which

dining table, which features a trendy

years, and due to its popularity, a cream

includes mirror and stool.

concrete-effect veneer top and striking

version was added in July – the full range

black metal painted leg frame, and can

consists of a two- and three-door wardrobe,

bed, which was also introduced in January,

comfortably seat four diners. The Athens

three-drawer bedside, dressing table, four-

saw the addition of a 5ft version.

chair which accompanies it has black metal

drawer chest and a five-drawer narrow

painted legs and a grey suede-effect seat


which complements the table to make an

Meanwhile, the Amelia wing-back fabric

Seconique would like to thank its new and existing customers for visiting its stand at

Better-established models were also

the Manchester Furniture Show, and would

displayed. Launched in January this year, the

like to invite interested parties to visit its

Alongside the Athens dining models is a

stylish Nevada high gloss-fronted bedroom

new showroom – at Boulton House, Owens

matching nest of three tables and a coffee

collection is available in grey or oyster, and

Trading Estate, Wobaston Road, Pendeford,

table, all of which help bring a modern

offers an impressive storage solution.

Wolverhampton, West Midlands WV9 5EY –

appealing set.

industrial look to the home.

Due to its success and customer requests,

where all of its newly-launched and existing

the following models have been added

products are on show.

bedroom collection, now in cream with

to Nevada’s grey selection: a two-door,

T 0121 506 4888

antique pine tops and handles. Sol has been

one-drawer wardrobe with mirror; a six-

Also featured at the show was the Sol

Seconique’s new HQ in Wolverhampton

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The Boulton House facility features an extensive showroom

24/08/2018 15:52

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We’ve cornered the comfy market. Our Winchester range is the last word in traditional La-Z-Boy comfort for all the family. Once your customers put their feet up in-store, they won’t leave without one. And with our ongoing spending on advertising, it might be the first sofa they ask to see.

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18 17:09

Corner sofa from the Winchester range Comfort Studio Collection

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86 | Manchester Furniture Show Review

CARING SOLUTION PROVIDER ENJOYS A REBRAND With fresh packaging, PoS display stands and a new-look website coming soon, solutions specialist is looking to the future after a busy Manchester show, MD Gill Finch tells Furniture News … C





Stroolmount specialises in furniture and flooring care products – invaluable for any retailer or homeowner wishing to move large, weighty items around




“Our specialist products are being

upfront. Then, from that 1000, you can just

onto two new stylish, more robust versions

repositioned under the brand Protect and

order whatever product you want, whenever

– one for the counter, and one for the wall.

Care,” says Gill of the latest developments.

you want – as little or as much as you need

Both feature the Protect and Care logo.

“Its heart logo symbolises our passionate

at a time.”

commitment to providing proven products

When it comes to displaying these

There is also an opportunity to present them in an even more dynalic format. The

to keep flooring and furniture looking its

packets, retailers can either fit them onto

new Protect and Care Wooden Counter Top

best. It also lets us give clients maximum

the existing cardboard display stands or

Rotary Display Stand has four quarters, so

flexibility to create their own-brand

customers can be enticed by products at the


front and sides. It has eight display hooks. As floor space is precious, there is also an

Delivered in neutral tones, the new packaging has been designed to complement

acrylic wall stand version. Strong, durable

any showroom colour scheme. Alternatively,

and clear, each wall stand offers six display

stockists can create own-brand packaging

hooks. Just like the new packaging, these new

that features their company’s colours, name, logo, website and photograph

counter top and wall stands feature the

alongside the Protect and Care logo.

Protect and Care branding, in modern neutral light and dark greys. Alternatively,

They can then choose to have each ownbrand packet filled with any Stroolmount

Stroolmount can create a bespoke display by

product – from Self-Adhesive Felt, Teflon

adding a company’s colours, name, logo and

Glides and Quickclick Glides to Castor Cups,

even a website. Visit Stroolmount’s website to explore

Pipe Covers, Door Stops and Floor Repair Kits. The back of each packet shows the

the full Protect and Care range and seize

product description, size, quantity, what it

valuable add-on sales alongside a furniture and flooring offer.

is for and how to use it. “It’s so easy,” says Gill. “You only pay for 1000 pieces of your own-brand packaging

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Stroolmount’s new Protect and Care Wooden Counter Top Rotary Display Stand

T 01942 271271

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88 | Manchester Furniture Show Review

Alpha Designs (01902 492937, is a progressive UK manufacturer at the forefront of design and fabric – which it once again demonstrated through the launch of its new autumn model collection at the recent Manchester Furniture Show. The collection – which comprises Pagoda, Deco, and Jaipur – was presented in new, vibrant fabrics. These autumn 2018 ranges, which have been designed and developed with a leading furniture designer, are set to bolster Alpha Designs’ ongoing growth in the marketplace, alongside the company’s existing successful commercial ranges – such a breadth of styles, with total flexibility on fabrics across all models, from a company with a can-do attitude, promises retailers an enticing proposition.

Jaipur medium sofa

Manchester provided Staingard ( with the opportunity to meet many of its retail partners, which mutually expressed an upbeat mood despite being concerned by “difficult trading times”. But, having seen its like before, the more dynamic retailers are looking to maximise every opportunity with Staingard protection plans and products. Staingard again demonstrated why its is the first choice for so many furniture retailers, by reinforcing the continued development of its specialist brands: Floorgard for gliders and felt pads; Mattressgard for mattress protection; Leathermaster repair products; and additional sales opportunities for every occasion. Whatever the furniture protection requirement, Staingard offers a solution.

essential guide to the The

UK domestic furniture and furnishings trade

The most extensive range available from including: Touch Up Markers & Graining • Transparent & solid colour markers • Clear finishing markers • Graining markers & colouring sticks

Repair Aerosols • Dye & Pigment Colouring Aerosols • Finishing Aerosol in 6 sheens • Low Odour Finishing Aerosols • Speciality Aerosols for spot repairs, blushing etc

Repair Kits • Touch Up Furniture Repair Kit • Professional Furniture Repair Kit • Cabinet Installation Kit • Flooring Installation Kit • Solid Wood Repair Kit • Quick Repair Burn-In Kit

Fillers • Simple Fill-Sticks & Quick Fill hot sticks • Burn In Repair Systems - matt & gloss • Epoxy Repair Fillers

furniture trade platform, o�ering market news, insight and new products in print and online. Its international scope is unsurpassed – it is recognised by the International Alliance of Furnishing Publications (IAFP) as the UK’s leading publication.

+ Wood Touch-up & Repair Training Courses

Furniture News is the UK’s favourite


T a

I a

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19/04/2018 11:57 24/08/2018 15:52

Full pag Telephone - 01282 691631


ILIV - Fusion




Buoyant launches fabulous new models at Manchester Furniture Show! The Manchester Furniture Show saw the launch of new models (Champ, Stella, Tizzy and Salute) as well as showcasing our already popular models which all received a positive response by visitors to our stand. If you didn’t get a chance to visit us at the Manchester Furniture Show, don’t worry because our sales agents will be visiting your area in our show vans soon.

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90 | Manchester Furniture Show Review

ELECTRIC CONCEPTS FROM NEW TREND New Trend Concepts brought several new sofa models to the Manchester Furniture Show, which were introduced at promotional prices which will apply for the next six months ‌


The new models introduced by New Trend

modular model with a steel insert in the arm

Concepts included Hypnose, a modular

and adjustable headrests.

system which can be customised according

New Trend Concepts has created

to the customer’s needs, and features a

handcrafted leather sofas in Italy for over 20

storage arm plus optional features such

years, and supplies top retailers throughout

as dual-motor electric recline, electric


headrest, an audio system with phone

Its extensive range of high-quality leather

charger, 20W loudspeaker and 25W sub-

furniture, as well as corner groups and sofa

woofer, and USB outlet.

beds, can be delivered to stockists within

Also displayed were Duca, which also

6-8 weeks.

offers an optional dual-motor electric

T 0039 080 314 0194

recliner and electric headrest, and Wish, a



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GalleryJ FN July

The beauty of the character

coming through on the oak and the light catching burnished tops, combined with the strong shapes, make Brixton a striking and unusual collection, yet one that would suit a range of interiors


Get the ‘Art in Industry’ look with the Brixton collection made with solid European rustic oak. | T 01795 439159

FN354_Pages.indd GalleryJuly18.indd 191 FN July Issue - Brixton.indd 1

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92 | Manchester Furniture Show Review

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Fitted bedroom brand Kindred ( presented furniture from its classic and modern bedroom collections, as well as internal accessories, chests of drawers and bedframes to complete its ranges. Designed with a contemporary twist to help maximise space, the brand offers a wealth of benefits, including quality Italian craftsmanship, premium painted or woodgrain finishes, innovative designs and a fully-managed delivery and installation service, presenting retailers with a new approach to bedroom design. Kindred also offered visitors a glimpse of its new made-tomeasure sliding offer.

Esker, in matt anthracite Mocka Diamond Crush

erutinruf dna sroolf ruoy rof noitcetorp tcefreP Final Touches (01324 185 8777, presented a range of models from its various collections.

Family owned and run, based in Scotland with a reach across

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+44 (0) 1241 858777

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FinalTouchesAugust18.indd 1

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19/07/2018 ku.oc .drag12:52 niats

24/08/2018 15:52


See us at See us at The Flooring See at TheusFlooring Show, Harrogate The Flooring Show, Harrogate Stand C3 Show, StandHarrogate C3 Stand C3


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Anja Meyer

A rude awakening?


Financial communications consultant, 60Zeilen

n the past three years, a huge number of mattress startups

from the end of 2017 until mid-2018, so they will have to undergo

have been founded and funded across Europe. Around 40 new

restructuring with a cash burn resulting in a runway of maybe 12

mattress startups were founded in or expanded into Europe in

months. Their stock price plummeted by -70% within days of its

that period – and some of them have already disappeared. These startups were mostly founded by people without any knowledge in that field. Why is this business model so tempting? There are mainly two reasons. First, the gross margins of 50% are

latest results coming to light, and the CEO subsequently left at the beginning of July. Considering their valuation upon their IPO, one could have doubts already of whether a valuation of £140m in Q2 2017 makes sense.

very high, and second, there are nearly no barriers to entry. Besides

After all, they closed the annual year 2016 with a turnover of £12m

finding a mattress producer – which you can easily do, because there

and a loss of £11.3m.

are so many of them across Europe – all that is needed is an online shop. That’s it. No working capital, and no large investment. Companies like Casper or Tuft & Needle displayed extremely fast and successful growth in the US. Out of nowhere, they catered to

Simba, being slightly bigger, but essentially having very similar, loss-making KPIs, closed a financing round this summer of up to £40m at a pre-money valuation of £200m. This seems remarkable, when you compare it to other startups in

an end-consumer demand which incumbents failed to meet before

this business, such as the three German companies Bett1, Bettzeit

– they offered a convenient and fashionable way of choosing and

and Bruno. Bett1 expects a turnover of €120m in 2018, and Bettzeit

purchasing a mattress.

€60m [according to results derived from Similarweb market analysis

Their US success fuelled hype, and numerous startups across

tools]. Bett1 was funded without any external money, Bettzeit with

Europe were founded. They all shared the same story of a European,

just €5m. All sell mattresses online, growing by up to +100% per

high-growth sleep brand, and some attracted substantial investment

year, in an apparently profitable manner.

with that story. The best-funded players active in Europe are the US-based Casper, $240m in funding, followed by the UK-based Eve

When it comes to mattresses, too much dreaming might lead to a rude awakening.

and Simba. Let’s have a closer look at UK-based Eve and Simba, and a story about the rise and fall of startups. Both promised unprecedented growth and failed to meet their promised growth targets. Did they demonstrate a sustainable business model? In 2017, Simba, for example, expected to make £50.9m in revenues, but made just £41m. To be fair, both companies are startups. In such a venture, no-one can really predict whether a certain level of growth can be achieved – so one might conclude that no-one is to blame. However, to attract investors, Eve and Simba continued to overpromise, while their cash burn rate was as high as -100%, in a business where you can hardly find any returning customers. Both justified their growing investment and cash burn by creating a European sleep brand that will eventually make money

Eve and Simba continued to overpromise, while their cash burn rate was as high as -100%, in a business where you can hardly find any returning customers

through lower marketing in the future, when customers are more familiar with the brand. But, in this market, customers only buy every 10 years! Establishing a brand works in the long-run if you can continuously invest into your brand equity or create a large, returning customer base. That’s why, for example, Netflix can spend a lot on acquiring customers, who pay their fee every month. To show growth, contracts with brick-and-mortar retailers were bought by offering high amounts of marketing money. Retailers obviously accepted these highly-attractive deals, but were already planning internally not to really push the product. And how likely is it that an underperforming product which is not pushed in sales will continue to be stocked by the retailer once the initial period of the contract ends? Compare Eve and Simba to their competitors, and their strategy appears even more incomprehensible – Eve did not really grow

Got a view you’d like to share with the trade? Get in touch with the editor at

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2nd & 3rd October 2018

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Excellent Relax (01924 441654, has manufactured white-label adjustable beds for numerous companies for decades, with a sustained focus on value and quality. From simple 3ft adjustable beds on legs to bedsteads and specialist care models, Excellent Relax can develop bespoke models to spec. The Pearl bedstead pictured is from the company’s Diamond collection. A contemporary bedstead with low head and footboard, it is one of eight Relax-branded beds in the company’s brochure.

Shakespeare Beds (0121 764 4024), based in the Midlands, has manufactured high-quality hand-crafted mattresses, divan bases and headboards in the heart of England for over 30 years. Taking pride in the quality of its products – and covering opencoil, pocket-sprung, air-sprung and encapsulated mattresses, bases and headboards – Shakespeare Beds offers its customers choice, prompt delivery and competitive prices. A regular exhibitors at the annual NBF Bed Show, Shakespeare Beds will return to the event this month to present classic highperforming models, natural models with a range of bases and headboards, and more.

Handmade in Yorkshire from premium, natural and organic materials, the Natural Collection of luxury mattresses by Hyder Living (01484 531000, can be tailored to customer demand. Despite being a stock range, the Natural Collection is for those times when customers demand the very best in a product that is made exclusively for them. Crafted to order, customers can fine-tune any of the parts in their mattress, from SportLine 4000

adding a layer of organic wool or mohair to an additional tablet of pocket springs or a pillow top. Director Biny Hyder comments: “We’ve long made our

Highgate Beds’ (01924 454678, sole focus has always been its beds’ users – consequently, the development of its Zero Gravity mattress technology has been at the forefront of the company for the past few years, and it continues to go from strength to strength. Zero Gravity can be found in the original, the second-generation

mattresses right here in Britain, but the Natural Collection is the first time we’ve bought this together with the very best natural and organic materials for a mattress of unsurpassed quality. We try to source our fillings from local suppliers, helping to reduce our impact and remembering that British farmers and producers are among the best in the world.

Medicpaedic and the combination mattresses within Highgate’s Healthopaedic range, encompassing greater support, comfort and pressure reduction, and all specially designed to accommodate the sleeper. Highgate Beds has also expanded its handmade ranges by adding natural fillings to its lines. In all, it has been a strong year for Highgate Beds so far – the business received an A rating from its NBF audit, Zero Gravity was established as a popular trade mark, and the business has developed the knowledge to further grow its lines, all from the heart of Yorkshire. The luxury fillings of wool, mohair, cashmere and pashmina have also being introduced to new contract ranges, which were developed in July. Thanks to the new Healthopaedic designs, this year’s NBF Bed Show promises to be the company’s best yet – visit it on stand H50.

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98 | Beds & Bedroom

Each Octaspring dynamically conforms to the contours and movements of the body

TAKING OCTASPRING TO A WIDER AUDIENCE “Dormeo are gearing up for a busy season ahead, with new product launches and trade shows around the UK,” says Mike Pitt, the MD of Dormeo UK, who explains the difference the company’s innovative Octaspring technology can have on sleep quality …

“In an ever-changing marketplace, Dormeo

hot and uncomfortable, causing disturbed

preferred the feel of Octaspring to their own

will continue to invest in forward-thinking

sleep. The unique Octaspring ventilation


design, research and development whilst

system has been designed to provide a

maintaining our passion to deliver the

constant airflow – body movements push

manager at Dormeo UK, is looking forward

best customer service, choice and value for

warm humid air out of the specially-

to The South West Furniture Show (taking

money,” says Mike.

designed sides of the mattress, drawing

place from 11-13th September) and the

fresh air back in.

Autumn Furniture Show (2nd and 3rd

“The focus will be on expanding product ranges incorporating our award-winning

Dormeo states that it is as if the

David Green, senior regional sales

October), and states: “These shows are ideal

patented Octaspring technology so that

Octaspring actually breathes, providing a

platforms to welcome both our existing and

more and more consumers can benefit from

fresh and healthy sleeping surface, night

new retail partners to introduce Dormeo to

the superior comfort and value it offers.”

after night. The Octaspring mattress

more and more customers seeking healthy

performs like no other to cradle the body in


For those unfamiliar with Dormeo’s

“We look forward to a busy season ahead,

innovative Octaspring technology, patented

comfort. Each individual Octaspring spring

memory foam springs enable the sleeper

dynamically conforms to the contours

presenting our award-winning ranges,

to enjoy the true comfort of memory

and movements of the body in all sleeping

and highlighting Dormeo’s revolutionary

foam – with a proven eight times better

positions by functioning independently,

Octaspring technology.”

breathability than traditional memory foam,

offering customised support and immediate

according to the company.


Whatever the temperature, without adequate ventilation a sleep surface can get

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According to Dormeo, independent tests have shown that eight out of 10 people


Dormeo’s ranges can be seen throughout the year at the company’s new showroom in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.

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better Stylish Quality Beds and Mattresses

Memory Foam Specialist

Support both In-store and Online Retailers

Sleeping comfort manufactured in Britain.

Sleepur-pedic mattresses provide fantastic neck and spine support.

We have separate ranges for the two allowing both to stay competitive in their field of trade.

Bespoke Design Service

Fast Delivery

Excellent Customer Service

Mattresses and beds tailored to your requirements, which you may brand as your own.

Weekly deliveries to stores. Next day, direct home delivery also available.

Contact our friendly, experienced staff for information, and open your trade account.

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100 | Beds & Bedroom

PRODIGIOUS GROWTH FOR BED-IN-A-BOX NEWCOMER Conceived by entrepreneur Michal Szlas when he experienced a misleading and confusing buying experience, award-winning bed-in-a-box company Otty Sleep continues to enjoy rapid growth in the mattress industry … Launched in 2016 by a young entrepreneur

estimated second-year turnover figures

has helped the company increase its market

and keen athlete who understood the

of more than £8m – a YoY increase of

share as well as continuing to provide our

importance of a good night’s sleep, the Otty

almost +400%. This follows the company’s

innovative and award-winning products to

Sleep mattress combines 2000 encapsulated

increasing market share, which has resulted

both consumers and retailers – ultimately

pocket springs with high-grade, innovative

in Otty expanding its Leeds-based offices, as

helping customers receive a perfect night’s

memory foam, and comes at a price

well as its first venture into Europe with the


that is up to £150 lower than its nearest

opening of a technical office in Berlin.


However, despite Otty’s growth, the

The Otty mattress was also recently awarded an Expert Reviews Best Buy award,

company is not resting on its laurels, and

with testers claiming it was “the best

Szlas, now 25, and came following his

is aiming to achieve a turnover of £24m its

hybrid mattress we’ve ever tested”. The

search for the perfect mattress to match

third year of trading. Otty has also recently

award sits alongside the company’s Which?

his busy lifestyle. During his pursuit, he

undergone an investment process which will

Best Buy Award and five-star TrustPilot

quickly found the purchasing experience to

help it reach the next level and allow the

rating, highlighting the company’s growing

be confusing, and one full of false marketing

company to launch a host of new products

popularity and industry-leading credentials.

claims and high prices - so he decided to

and further expand into Europe.

The concept was the brainchild of Michal

create his own product.

Michal Szlas comments: “It’s been a

Retailers interested in stocking the Otty mattress should contact Otty Sleep directly.

Today, Otty Sleep is one of the fastest-

huge 12 months in terms of growth. We’ve

T 01133 202490

growing mattress companies in the UK, with

invested heavily over the past year, which

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Comfy and cooling memory foam.

2,000 encapsulated pocket springs.

Breathable airflow to keep you cool.

Risk free 100 night trial.

10 year warranty.

“The OTTY is the best hybrid mattress we’ve ever tested.” BEST BUY

For more information on our award-winning range and for further details on becoming a retailer, speak to the OTTY team on: Email: | Telephone: 01133 202490 | Website:

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Lido semi-solid oak collection


WIEMANN PRESENTS A WINNING COMBINATION In more challenging market conditions than it has seen for some years, Wiemann has been working hard to ensure that it remains ahead of the game …

Over the years, the award-winning manufacturer has earned itself a reputation

quality standards and attention to detail. Its wide choice of products and options

for good quality, attractive products at

means that the supplier is able to provide

equally enticing prices.

a full bedroom solution, whatever the

bedroom furniture range. But what’s key for a successful business is excellent customer service. “There’s no better measure of service

requirements. For example, its award-

than customer feedback – it’s the true

agent in the UK and Ireland, Litmus

winning Cayenne range – which includes

evaluation when they come back for your

Furniture, says: “The market seems to be

dual-depth wardrobes – not only looks

products because they appreciate what

slowing across 2018 – the hot summer has

impressive, but offers a practical way

you’re offering.”

definitely had an effect – but thankfully at

of squeezing more storage space into a

Wiemann, we are still seeing sales growth.

bedroom, especially around the bed. The

also benefits from its agent Litmus

“We have been working hard to build

Simon Hewitt, MD of Wiemann’s sole

Unusually for many importers, Wiemann

collection also features a wide choice of

Furniture’s team of UK and Irish agents

business with our customers and strive

drawers and units to provide further storage

across eight territories, which is available

for continuous improvement, focusing on


to help customers with product training and

factors such as quality, value for money and

Strong customer service is key. Wiemann

knowledge. Says Simon: “Our sales team ensures all

excellent service, which we believe are the

continually looks for ways in which it can

recipe to succeed and win in the long term.”

continue developing its systems, and has a

our customers are fully supported and get

tried-and-trusted national HDI programme

the best out of Wiemann, they are all vastly

great value for money is essential. From

in place. It recently took on HDI quality

experienced and well respected by the retail

promotional ranges such as Berlin and

manager, Andrew Mear, to ensure continuity


Miami to top-of-the-range semi-solid

and progression. He will look at evolving

collections like Serena and Lido, the features

Wiemann’s HDI framework to ensure the

its permanent Long Eaton showroom at the

and benefits are distinct, and prices keen

manufacturer continues to lead on service,

autumn Long Point exhibition from 17-19th

in comparison to similar products from

rather than follow.

this month, and at Stoneleigh Park for

Wiemann understands that offering

competitors. The manufacturer also ensures that it can

Kai Schwenke, Wiemann’s export manager, comments: “Design, style,

Wiemann will be exhibiting from within

the Autumn Furniture Show from 2nd-3rd October. At both, the supplier will present its

deliver what is promised. All Wiemann’s

innovation and practicality are all factors

latest portfolio additions and bestsellers.

products – whether premium or value – are

that need to be taken into consideration


made in the same factory, with the same

when it comes to creating a popular

FN354_Pages.indd 102


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FN Full

Create the perfect bedroom display!




Bedrooms of distinctive style, quality and value See us at our showroom in Long Eaton for the Autumn Long Point Exhibition 17-19 September and at Stoneleigh Park for the Autumn Furniture Show 2-3 October.

made in germany |

FN354_Pages.indd 103 FN Full page Wiemann July18.indd 1

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Introducing the 2018/19 Salus divan & headboard collection




We are launching our new range of divans and headboards at the Bed Show. The collection has 18 colours and 3 fabric options, including vibrant velvets, all with a 10 year guarantee, so you can be confident that our Salus beds will perform as good as they look. To complement the divans is a superb range of floor-standing headboards in a choice of 10 stylish looks, all designed to create a fabulous focal point in any bedroom.


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Bringing innovation and technology to the sleeping experience Whether rolled or boxed, all of our Uno mattresses offer the same fantastic benefits:


Telephone: 01629 823680 MADE IN THE UK

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• • • • • • •

Market-leading 10 year guarantee Quality materials across the range RFID tags for full traceability Ethically audited Exclusive components DHD and fast track ordering Made in the UK


24/08/2018 15:53

106 | Beds & Bedroom

Comfort 1400

NEW NATURALS BOLSTER HOME-GROWN OFFER Myer’s has been making good value, comfortable beds in the UK since 1876, and this year the brand has announced the launch of a new Natural Collection, plus an update of its popular Comfort and Ortho Collections.

While committed to staying true to its

The Comfort Collection comprises a range

guarantee quality, British-made products

heritage, Myer’s strives to remain at the

of four convenient no-turn pocket-sprung

from a family name that retailers and

forefront of technology and innovation.

mattresses, which are paired with pressure-

consumers can trust – a quality that

Embracing the latest in bed materials and

relieving fillings such as latex and memory

is reflected in the company’s five-year

comfort technologies, the new Natural and

foam for postural support, helping ensure a

guarantee on all bed sets and mattresses in

updated Comfort and Ortho Collections

great night’s sleep.

the Natural, Comfort and Ortho Collections.

promise to give customers the greater choice

Finally, there is the Ortho Collection,

Myer’s will present its new and updated

they are looking for in terms of both comfort

a range of three firmer orthopaedic

collections at three of this year’s leading

and value, designed with clear good-better-

mattresses featuring pocket springs ranging

bed trade shows – the AIS Bed Show on

best stories.

from 800 up to 1400, offering superior

29th August, the NBF Bed Show on 18- 19th

support, plus Myerpaedic support layers for

September, and the Autumn Furniture Show

added comfort.

on 2nd-3rd October – giving its customers

The new Natural Collection consists of a range of three traditional pocket-sprung mattresses which boast natural fillings

Whilst Myer’s is one of the original

various opportunities to see its latest

such as cashmere, silk and wool to create

pioneers of affordable, value-added


naturally comfortable mattresses.

mattresses, the manufacturer says it can

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ated d p u d n a n o ti c e ll o C l ra See our all new Natu s at the n o ti c e ll o C rt fo m o C d n a Ortho 18. 0 2 r e b m te p e S 9 -1 8 1 m NBF Bed Show fro

Made in the UK

5 Year Guarantee FN354_Pages.indd 107

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108 | Beds & Bedroom

Park Lane Beds (0121 389 4262, manufactures superior natural products, employing locally-sourced natural materials including such mattress fillings as fine mohair, silk, wool, cashmere, bamboo and cotton. Meanwhile, the company’s popular Cool Gel and memory foam mattresses conform to the body offering great support and keeping the sleeper cool. Made by skilled craftsmen with years of experience, Park Lane’s beds and mattresses not only offer high levels of quality, but also impressive value for money. The company places an emphasis on customer service, offering dedicated sales and support staff, and is constantly exploring ways to improve its offer. It also strives to be environmentally friendly wherever possible, recycling its cardboard

and plastics, and investing in energy-saving lighting throughout its factory. Park Lane Beds invites prospective customers to contact its sales team, and find out more about its growing story of style, comfort and affordability.


Eric Mostert, Hästens Partner, Netherlands FED UP WITH PRICE MATCHING YOUR TOP END BED SALES? We have the solution. We want you to join The World of Hästens. For more information on becoming a UK stockist and selling Sweden’s finest handmade beds contact:


HastensJuly18.indd 1

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® 19/06/2018 15:54

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RA Furn


Our mattresses feature zoned pocket springs, expertly combined with quality comfort layers such as wool or latex to deliver a restful sleep, night after night. Experience our latest collections at our regional roadshows Contact your area business manager to find out more

call 01282 851 111 or visit

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110 | Beds & Bedroom

Natural Sleep 2000

Natural Sleep 2000

Adhering to a customer-focused philosophy, West Yorkshire-based

compromising on quality. Its vacuum-packed mattresses are

bed and mattress manufacturers Myer Adams (01924 359498, www.

practical for easy transportation, and can be delivered direct to the and Sleepur-pedic (01924 359498,

customer through a next-day delivery service. have introduced separate ranges for bricksand-mortar and online retailers.

The companies boast a fast turnaround, delivering to retail stores in most parts of the UK on a weekly basis. Working closely

The eclectic ranges offer something for every customer, including

with stockists, they hope to help accelerate growth by offering

a new range of side hand-stitched and foam-encapsulated

good value-for-money products and area exclusivity, plus models


exclusive to shop floors and websites.

Sleepur-pedic is a memory foam specialist, offering mattresses that provide a high degree of comfort and support, without

Show van visits can be arranged for interested parties wishing to see a sample of the collections.










Visit us at the Bed Sh ow, Telford ! Stand J 20

J DeWalleg Ltd is a British manufacturing company with a history of innovation and Patents for the products it designs and makes in the UK. Its roots as a family company go back over 66 years and our ethos continues to be quality, craftsmanship and pride in what we make and sell. With continued investment and the inhouse CAD designing of its own production machinery and products, J DeWalleg Ltd strives to maintain its lead as a UK manufacturer supplying globally direct to the Bedding and Upholstery industry.

Standard three day delivery! Deluxe Beds an NBF approved supplier, manufacture five ranges of traditional hand side-stitched mattresses all available with a variety of fillings and with spring counts from 1000 single layer pocket springs up to 12,500 multi-layers. Our hand side-stitched mattresses deliver the highest quality and are available in three days (collected) or one week (delivered).

Prices start from as little as ÂŁ149*


*double, mattress only, collected or call 01484 427 373.

for products, services and contact information

Deluxe Beds, Beacon Street, Birkby, Huddersfield, HD2 2RS, United Kingdom

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Park Lane - Trade Ad A4 2018.pdf












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112 | Beds & Bedroom

Teaser samples from the Dunlopillo Go marketing campaign

SLEEP GETS SUPERCHARGED Leading UK manufacturer of latex mattresses Dunlopillo is preparing to launch its “game-changing” new collection for the coming season ahead – Dunlopillo Go … More than just a collection of three

spring foundations to produce a good-

mattresses, the Dunlopillo Go collection has

better-best story.

been designed to support an active lifestyle,

Through its high degree of elasticity,

encouraging people to step away from the

Dunlopillo latex provides instant pressure

chaos of everyday life and into a relaxing

relief for the user and encourages a healthy

haven for more restorative sleep.

blood supply to their muscles so they awake

Anyone from fitness enthusiasts and

revitalised. It also offers “progressive

those with stressful jobs, to people who

comfort”, says Dunlopillo, by adapting

just want a natural energy boost, could

and contouring to individual profiles

benefit from Dunlopillo Go’s advanced sleep

and movements – with healthy sleepers

system, which has been designed to enable

changing their physical posture up to 60

them to wake up feeling refreshed and

times a night, the responsive nature of latex


is a huge advantage for achieving deep sleep

Using its extensive specialist knowledge in market-leading latex beds, combined with the latest spring technologies,

without disturbances, states the mattress specialist. The Dunlopillo comfort layers

Dunlopillo has created a new hybrid of

are supported by carefully selected,

mattresses for anybody looking for the best

individually-nested pocket springs, which

possible recovery and sleep.

offer additional support to help renew

The three mattresses in the Dunlopillo Go

sleepers’ bodies during sleep. Adapting to

collection – Energise, Exceed and Excel –

the user’s body weight, the pocket springs

have been designed to sit below the premier

move independently of one another, offering

Dunlopillo Signature Collection, and are

complete support for the body, allowing

proposition – interested parties can visit

aimed at a younger audience at a more

the spine and joints to maintain a correct

Dunlopillo at this year’s AIS Bed Show on

affordable level. The mattresses are made

position during sleep.

29th August, the NBF Bed Show on 18- 19th

from comfort layers of 100% pure Dunlopillo

Offering a fully-supported in-store PoS

September, or the Autumn Furniture Show

latex (sourced from environmentally-

system and attractive pricing, coupled with

on 2nd-3rd October, to find out more.

sustainable plantations) which are matched

the convenient Dunlopillo Go Fast 5-7-

T 01823 667501

with carefully-selected encapsulated pocket

day delivery, makes for a compelling retail

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Orchid, Millennium and Royal Sovereign mattresses are Which Best Buys

Three Which? Best Buy awards in one mattress collection is a first for the Bed industry For details to become an exclusive stockist of this range please contact David Wescomb, Brand Director Email: | Telephone: 01823 667 501

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Introducing our new Eco Comfort Breathe mattress collection, eco-friendly mattresses made from sustainable materials that won’t cost the planet or your pocket. Featuring the revolutionary Microclimate Sleep System™ which combines three layers of advanced fibre technology for enhanced breathability. High performance fibres spring back to their original shape for superior durability and luxurious comfort.




1 2 3

Breathable Coolmax™ Sleep Surface wick moisture away from the body, creating a cooling effect for enhanced breathability and moisture control. Vertical Eco Breathe Fibres™ quickly channel moisture away from the body to prevent overheating through the night. Horizontally designed Eco Comfort Fibres™ naturally evaporate moisture through the breathable mesh border, to maintain a clean, fresh and healthy sleeping environment, night after night.

PROTECTING MARINE LIFE WORLDWIDE We’re proud to support the Marine Conservation Society

For more information please call 01282 851111 or visit

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116 | Beds & Bedroom

The Snow protector incorporates cooling Nordic Chill fibres

Cotton mattress protector

INCREASE AOV WITH THE PROTECTION SPECIALIST Despite a difficult trading headwinds for many, the award-winning Protect-A-Bed has enjoyed yet another year of sales growth, explains CEO Simon Zamet …

“Protect-A-Bed are specialists within the

approach to in-store displays and product

mattress protection category,” explains

development with a well-honed blueprint

Simon. “Nobody else has a drive or focus

of in-store sales growth. “It’s always necessary to maximise

like ours, and this is why we successfully trade in 49 countries around the world,

every sale when on the shop floor,”

and are recognised as global experts.

continues Simon, “but in this trading period, it’s even more important to

“We work with all of our retail partners


proactively in order to significantly drive

“Across the country, as retailers report

sales. This is at the core of our philosophy – quite simply, whether it’s one of our

lower footfall, Protect-A-Bed mattress

existing retail partners or a new partner,

protector purchases are benefiting both the

positive increases in sales can always

customer and the retailer. It’s a win-win

be achieved. That’s what working with

situation. The store increases their AOV

the leading brand and a global expert

(average order value), and their customer

guarantees you.”

can create a healthy and hygienic sleeping zone.

This year has seen the successful launch

“Plus, with Protect-A-Bed, the

of Protect-A-Bed’s Dynamic Display Bays,

customer benefits from an industry-

which have been well received.

leading 10-15-year anti-stain guarantee.

Furthermore, Protect-A-Bed’s

“Protect-A- Bed’s speciality is driving

innovative Snow pillow and mattress protector highlight the latest in cutting-

in-store performance, so linked mattress

edge cooling technology. The Snow product

and mattress protector sales are extremely

range promises greater optimisation of

high. Any store not maximising a

thermal conductivity, which is achieved

relationship and a service like ours needs

through the Nordic Chill fibres within the

to consider why.” Protect-A-Bed will present its range

pillow and mattress protector fabric. The company states that the fibres transfer

of mattress protectors at Cranmore Park

heat away from the skin almost 10 times

Exhibition Centre in Solihull for the AIS

faster than cotton, interacting with the

Bed Show, a one-day private show for AIS members on 29th August.

sleeper in a similar way to water touching the skin, and creating a cooling sensation. Protect-A-Bed combines a progressive

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Protect-A-Bed offers in-store display solutions to suit today’s bed retailers

T 02087 310020 E

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118 | Beds & Bedroom

Now in its 10th year of trading, Harmony Furnishings (01902 459898, has established itself has a leading supplier of high-quality, affordable furniture for the home. This month sees the company launch six Premium Bedroom Collections, all of which feature an easy vertical build system, plus the option to add accessories. In response to consumer demand, the new collections will be stocked in Harmony’s warehouse in Wolverhampton, which will serve to reduce the typical lead time for this type of product from eight weeks to just seven days, ensuring that retailers can sell the products with the confidence that customer orders will be fulfilled quickly – a must in today’s on-demand society. Harmony’s director Jason Stone says: “The launch of the new ranges is an exciting time for the business, with the collections being our most comprehensive pieces of bedroom furniture to date. “The pieces are designed to allow customers to make individual choices on how their finished bedroom space will look, whilst simultaneously maximising the amount of usable storage available to them. UK-held stock will be a huge benefit to retailers, allowing them to quickly fulfil orders and satisfy consumer Aspen


demand,” concludes Jason Stone.

Finished in a Dove Grey paint and with natural light oak tops, the new NTP collection from Kettle Interiors (01536 444960, builds on the success of its popular sister range the NT, retaining its Danish-inspired shape but broadening appeal with a Dove Grey painted finish, paired with charcoal fabric elements in the chairs, and a padded headboard and stool. Offering a balance between a modern Scandi-look and classic English style, the NTP collection is available for both bedroom and dining. With an impressive 51 items from which to choose upon launch, the range offers the depth to accommodate all sizes of home. The collection also features a choice of handle style,

NTP bedroom

metal drawer runners, and a stylish Eames-inspired dining chair. Next is Kettle’s SW bedroom, a timeless design that is offered in Classic White and Moonlight Grey paint finishes.The SW collection delivers an array of products covering everything needed to turn bedrooms into elegant spaces. Featuring beds from 3-6ft, and with three wardrobe styles, the range is already attracting strong interest from retailers looking for quality, class and style at highly-competitive prices, reports the supplier. SW bedroom

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Both ranges are available as part of Kettle’s wholesale, stockist and container packages.

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120 | Beds & Bedroom



From stand B20 at this year’s NBF Bed Show, Siesta Beds (0121 773

Then there is the new handcrafted Mulliners brand, which is

9969, will extend its bed collection, following

produced at the Mulliners Works in Birmingham – a location which

the success of its Gel Superior edge-to-edge encapsulated collection,

has been associated with high-quality manufacturing since 1861.

and Supreme Comfort collection – both of which were unveiled at the

The range embraces fine materials and a level of spring count and craftsmanship expected from a premier range.

company’s open week back in January. The improved spring count and upholstery value these models

Although it is produced on the same site as Siesta and Mayfair

offer – along with the new Health bed collection – are now being

beds, the new range will have its own dedicated production area,

introduced to the Siesta range.

states Siesta Beds.

Perfection... 10 year warranty for peace of mind Designed to fit deep mattresses Impermeable yet breathable Wide selection of materials Anti-dustmite

Register to attend at Protection Mattressgard products are perfect for all the family and the extensive range offers products in sizes that are designed to be used in the smallest cot to the largest bed.

Need help choosing the right mattress protectors? Visit or call +44 (0)1244 888 658

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122 | Beds & Bedroom

Breasley (01629 823680, will present the latest addition to its Uno boxed mattress range – the Natural Affinity Collection, featuring the Spirit 1000, the Tranquil 2000 and the Halcyon 3000 – at this year’s Bed Show. With a wool, silk and cashmere natural sleep surface and a choice of spring counts, the range offers independent retailers the opportunity to become part of the successful boxed mattress market. Visitors will also be able to see the revitalised Uno vacuum-packed range, with stylish new cover designs to improve its look and feel,

Spirit 1000, from the Uno Natural Affinity Collection

keeping the range fresh and appealing to both retailers and the end consumer. Breasley recently commissioned a new state-of-theart vacuum-packing machine at its Derby factory, to keep it at the forefront of mattress innovation and technology. For Breasley’s premium Salus brand, there will be a new range of divan fabrics and headboard designs on show, offering customers a far wider choice of colours and styles for 2018-19. The Salus Viscoool Collection will feature a new backcare model as part of the range, and the collection will feature a new embroidered cover for a more luxurious look and feel. Salus Natural Collection 5000

Also on show will be the Linden 5000, a new addition to the Salus Natural Collection, which sits at the top of the Natural range.



uonna ot duorp si yrotS gnivi Living LStory is proud to announce arrival of famous USSU suomaf nithgiL dna erutinruF yruxu Luxury LFurniture and Lighting brand MICHAEL AMINI INIMA LEA lac ofni erom roF .KU eht ot n in to the i UK. For more info call 0208 114 3025 or emailliame ro 52 ku.oc.yrotsgnivil@ofni t ata

TheInsertCompanyApr18.indd 1 FN354_Pages.indd 122

19/03/2018 BabbarAug18.indd 10:10 1

19/07/2018 09:04 24/08/2018 15:53


Shakespeare Beds 154 Wharfdale Road Birmingham B11 2DG 0121 764 4024

Shakespeare Beds are a leading manufacturer producing high quality hand crafted Mattresses, Divan Bases and Headboards in the Heart of England. Shakespeare Beds offer a wide range including Pocket Sprung, Open Coil, Laygel, Staingard, Contract Range and Natural Collections. Shakespeare offer high quality bespoke models including hand side stitching and much more. Bases and Headboards are offered in a range of different fabric types to suit all customer requirements. Shakespeare offer a warm welcome with no order too big or small. Come and visit us on stand A40

Shakespear.indd 1 123 FN354_Pages.indd

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Optimum Timber (07958 558684,

Success in today’s market

is a small family business that has supplied the furniture trade for

is all about choice, says

over 16 years from its warehouses in South Yorkshire.

Peter Woodman, founder of

The company offers a complete range of fully-assembled chairs

dining chair wholesaler and

– comprising unfinished traditional beech chairs, a range of solid

manufacturer Woodman

oak-finished chairs, faux leather and full fabric models – and these

Chairs (01884 841789, www.

are offered via a free delivery service to Yorkshire, Lancashire and

Nottinghamshire in the company’s own vans, or through a pallet

“One of the main reasons

service otherwise.

people come to us is because

Interested parties can see the company’s chair range by visiting

of the choice we offer – they

its dedicated website.

simply can’t access such variety anywhere else,” he says. “And this is happening


more and more, because the consumer wants choice – they want something different, and they are willing to pay for it.” Importing chairs from Eastern Europe in volumes

Oak Rowan bar stool carver with herringbone grey seat

of various sizes, Woodman offers notably different designs alongside the industry-standard ITW frames and Farmhouse models. Delivered within four weeks – and 70% of it available in just two days – the range is available in multiple finishes and timbers, with a choice of seating pads. There is even a bespoke frame manufacturing service available to those customers – domestic or contract – wishing to go off-menu. “We have some smart new chair designs such as the Nordic and Cricket stools coming through,” Peter concludes, “but we are starting to look at more specialist products.”




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126 | Dining Room



Staying ahead of the rapidly-changing popular trends is important for any business – and CIMC Home has strived to provide the home furnishing and lighting market with the latest fashionable furniture ranges, lighting and home accents for over 30 years. Expanding its portfolio every season,

Offering customers more than just

designed furniture, lighting and giftware,

CIMC Home stocks thousands of wholesale

bedroom and lounge furniture, CIMC Home

but represents even more impressive value

products, from modern classic styles

now stocks full dining collections. The

for money.

through to contemporary ranges, with

Jupiter, and the new Odelia, are extravagant

a specific focus on high-quality mirror

dining tables that are crafted in chrome,

does its passion for offering the home

furniture and unique designs.

and feature an interlocking curved design

furnishing market fashionable, on-trend

and a marble style tabletop. Accompanying

items – whether small home accents or

itself to developing ranges that differentiate

the tables are grey faux leather chairs that

large statement pieces, CIMC’s vast variety

its offer from those of its competitors.

feature a stripe stitched design and a stylish

of products range from full furniture

chrome frame.

collections to lighting, textiles and home

In recent years, CIMC Home has dedicated

Those familiar with CIMC’s products will be pleased to know that one of the supplier’s

Whilst the development of premium

As CIMC Home continues to grow, so

decor items including clocks, figurines and giftware.

most successful ranges – the Manhattan –

quality furniture remains a priority for CIMC

is being launched in a new colour. The Grey

Home, the business has a wide variety of

Manhattan furniture collection, described by

clients to cater for, from high-end retailers

simple - to inspire fashion-conscious

CIMC as “a vision of modern tranquillity”,

to small boutique hotels and interior

influencers with the latest on-trend

the collection features a soft shade of

designers – and has therefore launched

seasonal furniture, lighting and home

grey, sleek clear mirror bevelled edges and

its Value range, which promises the same


sparkling crystal handles.

high-quality, on-trend and expertly-


FN354_Pages.indd 126

In the words of CIMC, “our vision is


24/08/2018 15:53


Optimum Timber Supplies Ltd

• For brochure ring 07958 558684 or email

FREE for a DELIVERY mixed pall of 16 chairs et

• All chairs fully assembled

To see our full range please visit OptimumTimberFN354.indd 1

14/08/2018 11:12


110 - Slat Side (& High Back) Chair

111 - Spindle Side (& High Back) Chair

112 - Fiddle Side (& High Back) Chair

114 - Slat Low Carver

115 - Spindle Low Carver

116 - Fiddle Low Carver


M&P Chairs 340.indd 1

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07802 648383 07469 819520

13/06/2017 10:20

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128 | Dining Room




Winner of AIS Supplier of the Year award Wood Bros (01920 469241,

and is also the supplier’s longest table at 2475cm, making it suitable is set to tour the UK with its popular Rochford

for larger gatherings.

dining and occasional pieces this autumn. The Rochford features an impressive extending oak table and accompanying upholstered chairs. The Rochford (OC3189) is a deceptively lightweight table that contains two leaves, which are housed within the table. It features elegant tapered and turned legs,

The new dining chair (OC3190) is also a light chair, ideal for easy

B c a o v d

manoeuvrability. It also features the supplier’s new Classic finish – a striking mellow tone, but without any dents. Interested parties should contact Wood Bros for more information or to arrange a show van visit.

Ye Olde Traditional… F FINI





A o

T T:

01604 890956

E: or

YOTFC Ltd. 3 Roe Farm, Cogenhoe NN7 1NL YeOldeJuly18.indd 1

FN354_Pages.indd 128

Beech Amish also available with oak seat

20/06/2018 11:26

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A MODERN DESIGN FOR A MODERN MARKETPLACE BROLO Living and Dining. A new collection from Furniture To Go which is at the cutting edge of design. Stylish, original, and modern, Brolo is a stunning addition to any living space. A crisp high gloss finish perfectly complements the sleek lines, with optional lighting completing this high-end, 21st century aesthetic. This is a range we are very proud to introduce to the UK, and one which customers will fully embrace. See all details on

Wall shelf 167 and 197 cm

All available for next day delivery to yourself or your customer – no minimum order and 20% off for displays. Call us today! Coffee table

Tall wide glazed display cabinet

2 door 2 drawer TV unit

Tall bookcase

Tall glazed display cabinet RH Tall glazed display cabinet LH

3 door 1 drawer sideboard

3 door 1 drawer wide sideboard

Wide 1 door bookcase

Extending dining table

Furniture To Go, 3 Keel Close, Interchange Park, Portsmouth, Hampshire PO3 5QD - T: 02380 517067 E: -

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LIVING ROOM Pickering Chair

This year, Wood Bros (01920 469241, has collaborated with two established British woollen mills, Harris Tweed and Abraham Moon, to create a collection of 100% wool sofas and chairs. The Pickering Chair features attractive tailored buttoning, pleating and scroll arms, as well as turned timber feet, and a compact sofa and footstool complete the group. Both sofa and chair have enveloping backs and comfortable sprung seats. The sofa comes with two scatters, and all models are available in five standard wood finishes. More upholstery designs are on the drawing board right now, so stockists should expect further launches imminently.

Whitemeadow ( unveiled an exclusive collaboration with award-winning mattress manufacturer, Hypnos, at the show, which will see the first-ever Hypnos sofa bed mattress available to buy with a selection of Whitemeadow sofa beds. Chris Ward, group marketing director at Hypnos Beds, says: “Hypnos is celebrated as the expert in handcrafted, pocket-sprung mattresses, and is delighted to be working with Whitemeadow to support its latest sofa bed range. “In conjunction with Whitemeadow’s product team, Hypnos has developed a luxurious pocket-sprung mattress which fits perfectly into the sofa bed mechanism and offers a superior level of support for a comfortable night’s sleep. “Traditionally, sofa bed mattresses comprise either foam or open coil springs. With a pocket-sprung mattress, the body is fully supported throughout the night by individual springs which adjust to the shape and weight of the body. This mattress also allows natural air flow aiding temperature regulation to prevent overheating.”

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132 | Living Room

Luxury office chair in grey brushed velvet

Luxury office chair in yellow leather-effect cover

Chaise bar stool in yellow leather-effect cover

SIT UP AND TAKE STOCK OF SHANKAR’S OFFER This month, Wolverhampton-based dining furniture specialist Shankar unveils its new bar stools and luxury office chairs, which comfortably complement its fresh portfolio of on-trend lines …

Shankar prides itself on being one of the

highly-polished chrome base and footrest.

hooded castors allow easy movement of

UK’s leading designers, importers and

Assembly is required and each model is sold

the chair – whether it is being used for

distributors of quality furniture, and its


gaming, the office or home study. The chair

latest models are great examples of the company’s commitment to quality and style. Stand-out pieces include the Chaise bar stool. Part of a wider collection, this luxury

Next is the luxury office chair, which

comes complete with a lockable reclining

emerged from the same product family as

tilt mechanism, with tension control –

the Chaise bar stool.

adjustable according to the user’s body

With styling that offers modern comfort

weight and lockable in the upright position. They are supplied with chrome metal legs

seat is designed to transform the interior

and convenience, these luxury office chairs

look of any room.

promise to enhance the look of any home

(assembly required), and, again, the models are sold individually.

Full of charm and with an emphasis on

office or study. Its backrest and seat pad are

clean lines, this stylish collection is available

finished with quality fabric available in grey

in black, grey or mink brushed velvet, and

brushed velvet, or leather-effect covers in

purchase wholesale, via DHD – Shankar

now also in grey or yellow leather-effect

grey or yellow.

can provide a store-to-door service in just


There is impressive button detail to the

Shankar’s products are available to

24 hours thanks to its large stocks – or as

back, front and sides., while the sturdy

direct container orders.

around the front, back and sides, this

five-star chrome base is height-adjustable

T 01902 399764

height-adjustable stool is finished with a

using a gas lift handle, and the twin wheel

With a buttoned back and stud detailing

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For nearly 40 years, Abbeylands Furniture

comprises new colours and designs to reflect

(, sales@abbeylands.

the different moods and expressions of the

ie) has buildt an admirable reputation in

current interior trends.

the furniture industry for the quality of

In order to fulfil customer needs,

its design and innovation. Its Scatter Box

Abbeylands’ in-house buying and creative

collections feature a full range of feather-

team travels worldwide to trade fairs and

filled cushions, curtains, bedding, throws,

markets to gain inspiration and gather new

velvet furniture and original hand-painted


art – all of which is designed and/or made

Interested parties can contact the company to request the new season’s look

in Ireland. The company recently launched its new

book, which features all the latest colours

autumn/winter collection at the IFHS and

and designs available – or they can simply

Autumn Fair exhibitions. Every collection

download it from Abbeylands’ website.

Streaks, the latest design in the Atlantic series from machine-woven rug specialist Louis de Poortere (info@depoorterelouis. com,, blends texture, distressed areas and intricate stitching, inspired by the sandy shores and winter gales of the New Jersey shoreline. Streaks has a worn vintage look that gives it the quality of abstract art. Jacquard woven and hand-finished in Belgium from cotton chenille and high-gloss polyester yarns in five colourways – including the high-impact Montauk Multi and tonal Coney Grey – Streaks


brings a fresh and modern

its unique multi-layered texture, Streaks

sided unit features a leaflet holder and a

feel to the

feels very modern, its abstract design

convenient hanging system.

home, echoing

fitting alongside Surf’s more high-style

the original

look. Streaks is a design that is certainly

“There is no doubt that our designs continue

ethos of the

more versatile, but no less beautiful, and

to win fans across the country, but not every


one that’s sure to appeal to homeowners

retailer has the room to make the most of

on the look-out for a rug that shows a

them. This brand new display solves that

Russell, sales

sophisticated, mature approach to interior

problem, bringing the style of Louis de

director UK,


Poortere in a footprint no bigger than your


says: “Despite

FN354_Pages.indd 134

Louis de Poortere has also launched a

Alan Russell, sales director UK, says:

average lectern.” The company is offering an introductory

the use of

striking PoS unit in which to display its

worn and

rugs. The unit features eight large sample

discount on the display, or a display and full

vintage effects

swatches plus graphics that show off the

sample set – any retailer ordering a total

used to give

company’s collection. With a compact

of 40m2 of rugs will receive the display and

the quality

footprint of just 500 x 570mm, the double-

samples free of charge.

24/08/2018 15:54

Full pag

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136 | Furnisher

RESTYING INTERIORS WITH COAT HANGERS Details matter to anyone planning a home makeover – small details can define the mood and style of an interior space, says Polish lighting and furniture accessories specialist GTV, which discusses the impact coat hooks can have on a hallway or entrance room …

By employing some simple ideas, coat hooks

looking to the latest trends when designing

be in harmony with the functionality and

can be used to truly optimise the space in

an interior space. “A strong style today

convenience of the fitting-out solutions.

people’s homes, says GTV – which offers

fuses industrialism with natural, organic

numerous solutions for making entrance

accents,” states GTV.

“And here, coat hooks can come in various convenient applications. An example

“A good example here includes

of practical convenience is a hanger with

accessories in black, like coat hooks

a shelf to place flowers or small clothing

designs can build an impressive experience

fastened to wood, and the more the wood is


for your guests right from your doorstep,”

weathered and worn, the better.

spaces neat, appealing, and convenient. “Intriguing and innovative coat hook

states GTV. “A DIY coat-hook panel made

“This is wabi-sabi – a trend which pays

Another interesting solution is a minihanger, made with WZ-Malag – a great

from a tree trunk and a line-up of black-

homage to beauty in imperfection. The

place to store your home keys, or when

matte K24-B0 hooks is an instant eye-

wooden baseplate will match any interior

installed in your kitchen, your favourite

catcher with an eco-friendly, rustic style.

style, from the modern and trendy to

collection of mugs.

“Playing with retro styling can create interesting effects too – the antique brass

vintage looks. “If you prefer something bolder, you can

“Whatever your solution will be, it is important that details play a key part in

K24 hooks against antique wood will make

experiment with the shape of the hooks.

defining the decor. They complete the whole

for a great finishing touch for your hallway,

Though large, the inverted C-shaped

and make it perfectly personalised – just the

while adding a touch of refinement.”

model does not impinge on the refinement,

way you want it to be.”

GTV states that customers seeking even

subtlety and smartness of the finish. It is a

GTV is an international distributor of

more refinement and classic chic should

great solution for those who follow haute

furniture and lighting accessories based

look at pieces which harmonise with tones

couture and elegance in fashion – it will not

near Warsaw. Its product portfolio is one of

of beige and shades of white. “To underline

bulge out the hats when hung.”

the most comprehensive available, covering

the sophisticated and elegant finish of your

Elegance and convenience should be the

several thousand items in several dozen

hallway, add the Toledo aluminium hooks

watchwords when it comes to coat hooks,

product groups, including hinges, rails, lifts,

to fill in the empty backdrop and define it

suggests GT, stating: “When fitting out

holders, wardrobe and kitchen equipment,

better,” says GTV.

an apartment, especially a small one, the

as well as LED lighting.

criteria of appearance and design must

The accessory specialist recommends

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Let’s Put Rogue Traders to Bed Rogue traders continue to steal business from legitimate bed manufacturers and retailers. They dupe people into buying products that are simply not what they claim to be.









E • SLEEP S PACK INCLUDES: Window vinyl, in-store vinyls, pyramid display boards, USB stick with new videos and downloadable artwork

Email: for further information FN354_Pages.indd 138 24237•NBF Trade Ads Furniture News Full Page.indd 1


Available for bed retailers sourcing at least 50% of their beds from NBF members


Become a NBF Retail Supporter and together we can put rogue traders to bed.

FREE point of sale pack S ED

The NBF is fighting back – investigating dubious products and businesses and reporting our findings to trading standards. 24/08/2018 24/04/2018 15:54 13:56

• ADVERTISING – Most advertising does not work, so if

Generate 25%, 50% even 100% • PRODUCTS – Be ruthless with your precious floor space. of Your Annual Sales If a product or collection is not pulling its weight after being given a fair chance to shine, then clear it and replace it with a in Just Days… better performing line. Test17 and measure the selling potential

yours isn’t, stop wasting your money now and re-design your advertising campaigns using a benefits-orientated-style. Call copywriting know-how. 139 T R A DGreenwood E S E R Vfor I Ceffective ES Jet Press (01623 551800, is the sole UK supplier of Sigma Tee Nut machines, which are able to speed up the insertion process without losing any of the precision and craftsmanship expected by customers. According to Jet Press, the insertion of Tee Nuts can be consistently deeper and straighter with these proven machines. Tee Nuts are automatically fed by a vibrating hopper bowl which ensures that they are uniformly positioned into the track leading

of all your products in a Greenwood Sale.

Will your January 2017 sales be the best month’s total • SELLING SKILLS - Get good at this selling. you’re going to see year? Most retailers

into the machine, ready for insertion. The machine is triggered by a footswitch, leaving the operator’s hands free to safely hold the timber in place. The standard insertion machine is capable of up to 2000 insertions per hour, making a considerable difference to the productivity for any volume furniture producer. Yet speed is not the only benefit – the consistent accuracy achieved by the

don’t bother with a proper sales process or sales training. The Wouldones you like see sales of and two,money four, sixinorquality even eight successful do! toInvest time sales times what is normally your best month? know-how. Call Greenwood to arrange an effective sales training course.

As our clients know very well (and will tell you), the above sales results are not exceptional for a Greenwood Tee Nut machines have safety systems for the peace of mind COMPETITION Check your competition to find out what Sale. They are–standard. You could enjoy such recordof both operator and factory management, and are delivered and breaking sales Avoid results all-out too – with high margin they are offering. price wars. Bemaintained. sure to out-do machine far surpasses that of a manual insertion process, says

Jet Press.

installed by Jet Press. Operator and maintenance training is also carried out when a new machine is installed. Jet Press maintenance engineers are available for call-out,

and the supplier endeavours to keep replacement machine parts in stock to ensure reliable and efficient aftersales service. It has a wide range of imperial and metric thread sizes and lengths in stock to suit various applications. Interested parties should contact Jet Press for a free trial.

your competition on the most relevant beneficial USP’s including choice, quality, value and service. Call Greenwood to mystery shop your competitors.

DISCOVER THE FORTUNE • PROMOTION – Promote your business effectively. Every THAT LIES HIDDEN IN good retailer from Tesco to Harrod’s does. Consider using a ‘Greenwood’ sales promotionBRAND… to increase sales, turn stock into YOUR cash and win future market share, while protecting your profit at the same time. Call Greenwood! Why not call me today on 01565 650101 for a free, confidential, no-obligation business consultation? I can outline sales projections and costs over the phone.

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT GREENWOOD SALES... Limited bookings for 2017 and 2018 are now being taken

Take aon look at our website or call us now on 01625 521010, a first come first served basis. The best launch dates alwaysand go first. or, send an e mail enquiry, we’ll gladly call you to discuss the exciting possibilities we can offer you, To find out morewithout withoutobligation. obligation, or to book a sale, call now on 01565 650101, or send an e mail and I’ll gladly call you.

We are now booking events right across the UK and Ireland for the rest of 2013 on a first come first served basis. Book your sales event early to guarantee exclusivity for your business.


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140 | Trade Services

New building blocks for the bedding sector

Turkish textile specialist Boyteks Tekstil offers mattress manufacturers a new perspective on mattress ticking, adding value to their models while improving their quality for consumers …


sector. Graphene offers highly-efficient uses in a number of fields, from water impermeability to resilience, and from eco-friendly processes like purification to electronic devices. Graphene occupies an important place in the field of smart fabrics, and threads made with Graphene bring a new quality to Boyteks’ mattress tickings. The development in carbon across various fields is reflected in Graphene – its strong conductivity gives it anti-static properties, able to remove some of the tension-related electricity, protecting sleepers against the electrical build-up that can have a negative Graphene

impact on the body during sleep. Additionally, the strong bonds that Graphene achieves makes the fabric employing it last longer. Boyteks believes there are numerous possibilities for mattress tickings that employ these new – and old – technologies.

Boyteks has again reinforced its eco-conscious approach to materials

and technologies for the bed industry, introducing three innovative new products designed to help users achieve a better night’s sleep. The first is hemp – a material that can be applied to thousands of products and offer numerous benefits, and is now available for use in


mattress fabrics. Due to its unique structure, hemp requires much less water than cotton to grow, and provides a more durable raw material for textiles – the fibres obtained from hemp are four times more durable than cotton fibres, and hemp can be cultivated in the same soil for years without deteriorating its yield. As a sustainable material, hemp stands out among the natural fibres – which Boyteks decribes as “the most important materials of the future”. Next is Umorfil, a mattress ticking produced from waste fish scales (which take a long time to break down naturally) that employs amino acid bionic fibres. Umorfil is a new supramolecular technology that combines ocean collagen peptide with textile materials to achieve a good feel with skin-friendly properties for sleep-related fabrics. Finally, there is Graphene, which Boyteks describes as “a new-age material” which forms a basis for “ground-breaking work” in the

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142 | Trade Services

Kinetic Logistics (01869 233317,

onus on the importer to carry out their

within the suppy chain, and less possibilities is seeing

deliveries,” he says. “The larger ones are

for damage in transit.

increasing demand for its two-man delivery

looking to cut costs, and the independents

services, says business development

are selling more online, so both are looking

from place to place, the less chance there

manager, Simon Morris.

to delivery partners with their own storage

is of it being damaged,” says Simon.

facilities. We’re finding that more and more

“Many of today’s retailers just don’t want

and grew out of established wholesaler

of our accounts, old and new, want two-

the responsibility of handling product

Baumhaus, has long offered retailers DHD

man delivery, and in the manner that we can

themselves, and would rather their logistics

services, but now it is attracting more

offer it.”

partner take the responsibility. They’re

Kinetic, which is based near Bicester

“The less a piece of furniture is moved

Kinetic’s dropship and DHD services help

also keen to have their fulfilment processes

seeking easier, more cost-effective forms of

keep the number of journeys undertaken by

managed by just one partner – it’s all about

fulfilment, says Simon.

a piece of furniture to a minimum. This also

keeping things simple and cost-effective for

ensures fewer interruptions for every party

retailers, and their customers.”

interest from importers and wholesalers

“Retailers are increasingly putting the





CONTACT US TODAY: 01869 233 317 CONTACT CONTACT US US TODAY: TODAY: 01869 01869 233 233 317 317 | ||

KineticAug18.indd FN354_Pages.indd 1142

24/08/2018 15:54


For everything you need to know about


Find out how membership of the Furniture Industry Research Association can benefit your business T: 01438 777 700 E:

FN354_Pages.indd 143

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144 | Trade Services

Crowds queuing to buy during a Greenwood sales promotion

Greenwood Retail’s (01565 650101,

profile retail sales events on behalf of quality retailers – including

clients can testify that the sale specialist’s high-impact promotional

many AIS members – all over the UK and Ireland.

strategies can generate 25-100% of a retailer’s annual turnover –

“Greenwood has far more experience of planning and organising

depending on the nature of the event and other variables – with high

retail sales in this marketplace than any other sales company in

margin maintained in just 17 days’ trading.

the world,” says Bernard. “This means that no-one else is better

“Greenwood’s retail clients are enjoying record-breaking sales success despite heatwaves, Brexit and the associated downturn in The sales promotion company specialises in organising high-



next sales event.” Greenwood can usually outline sales projections and costs from a

big-ticket spending,” says MD Bernard Eaton.


qualified to help British and Irish retailers get the best out of their


Contact Steely for brochures & prices

0161 702 7002

brief discussion, either in person, or even over the phone.

Growing Pains?

How Do You Manage? Now over 750 Furniture Retailers, turning over £700,000,000 annually, enjoy the benefits of the Retailsystem Call us to discuss how we can help run your stores & ecommerce websites more efficiently and profitably - a complete Multi Channel solution

Tel: 0131 440 7607

Ask for leaflets

Designed to work... Built to last.

FN354_Pages.indd 144

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Trade Services | 145

TEE NUT INSERTION SYSTEMS A detailing course taking place at Furniture Clinic’s dedicated training workshop

Furniture Clinic (01207 279520, is a furniture restoration specialist that manufactures a range of trade and retail products for leather, fabric and wood. As well as being utilised by a nationwide network of technicians, its products are increasingly being employed by other trade professionals to offer customers their own repair solutions. Furniture Clinic’s professionally-proven repair products present retailers with handy opportunities to fix damaged furniture, rather than replace it, lowering the costs involved for all parties – and these products can even be rebranded to suit. For any business looking to offer leather restoration as a service, Furniture Clinic offers professional leather training courses (with trade discounts). These courses – which Furniture Clinic says are globally endorsed and approved, and are considered by many to be the best in the industry – are delivered in the company’s own training facility, situated within its 16500ft2 premises in Newcastle upon Tyne, where the company manufactures its repair products. Its dedicated training room offers a fully-equipped and functional workshop, putting a custom spray room at users’ disposal. Furniture Clinic provides trainees with all the tools, products and samples they need, so there is no need for them to bring their own. Around 50 staff work in Furniture Clinic’s head office team, including dedicated trade account teams for the UK and international customers, plus technical and training, and research and development departments. Looking further afield, there is Furniture Clinic’s National Repair Service, which is a major UK provider to home insurance and warranty companies. Many retailers and manufacturers assume furniture damage – such as a rip or burn in a leather sofa – cannot be repaired, but Furniture Clinic’s technicians can carry out seamless repairs, often in the customer’s home. This includes all types of furniture repair, from leather and general upholstery to beds, wooden items and leather panel replacement. Furniture Clinic states that its website generates over 6000 enquiries a year for repairs – and these, too, are handled by its National Repair Service, a network of the company’s own branches and independent companies. Furniture Clinic is always on the look-out for reliable partners to carry out work on its behalf, in all areas of the UK. Approved partners benefit from further product discounts off trade prices, and the opportunity for extra work. Some may even consider the further benefits of becoming a fully-fledged Furniture Clinic franchise,

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FurnNewsAdvertSept18_260x92_Portrait.indd 1 FN354_Pages.indd 145

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146 | Trade Services

REPEAT ORDERS FILLING FIBRELINE’S ORDER BOOK Demand for Encore cushions continues to grow, reports the manufacturer of the cushion filling brand, Fibreline, which has been forced to expand its production capacity and take on extra staff as more and more retailers come to appreciate the benefits offered and request cushions containing Encore for their ranges …

Encore is now many businesses’ go-to cushion for comfort and performance

distribute the combined-filling Encore line.

The Encore cushion range has many

offers the recovery properties of foam.

advantages, says Fibreline – it retains

Meanwhile, Encore Feather is a cushion

a cushion’s casual look, and, because of

that contains feathers, and looks and feels

products such as the Encore cushion range,

its foam core, its resistance to sagging

like feather, but also has the recovery

and ever-shorter lead times, Fibreline

and easier maintenance gives retailers

performance of foam.

believes that in-house control of sewn case

confidence in the performance of both fibre and feather cushions. Encore Fibre – which was awarded the

As well as the standard Encore range,

With increasing demand for value-added

production is essential for meeting customer

Fibreline has developed a number of

demand, and has invested in taking steps to

unique combination cushions for various

ensure it can fulfil demand today and in the

FIRA Gold seal of approval, outperforming

manufacturers. This give the manufacturers’


all other fibre cushions in tests – is a

cushions a very personal feel, that is

T 01535 606846

cushion that looks and feels like fibre but

different from that offered by their

competitors’ products. Over the last 15 years, Fibreline has positioned itself as a one-stop-shop for upholstery manufacturers, meeting every filling requirement through a range of high-quality foam, fibre and feather cushion products, all of which are made on one site and delivered via one vehicle to their Encore Feather

FN354_Pages.indd 146

door. According to Fibreline, it is a winning formula, and one which led it to create and

The Exchange offers fully-featured meeting spaces Encore Fibre

24/08/2018 16:02

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148 | Designer


Alessia, Adele Marie Sison Alessia, a modular seating range designed for modern living, was unveiled by Nottingham Trent University graduate Adele at this year’s New Designers exhibition.

“Inspired by a growing need for flexibility within the home, Alessia

“Because sofas aren’t just used for sitting, the

features arms and backs that can be clipped onto a steel base in a

consideration for occasional sleep has also been designed

variety of configurations, while also being easily dismantled for

into the Alessia range. The base of the sofa is actually a

transport. The square and rectangular bases can be combined to create

bespoke mattress, which utilises innovative plastic spring

a completely customisable seating experience for any living space”

technology from the bed industry”

“Atop the mattress is a feather topper which unzips to reveal

“Beautifully styled and highly adaptable,

a standard-sized duvet. The side cushion is a standard-sized

Alessia can be configured to be a chair, sofa,

pillow, while the back cushion rolls out to reveal a feather

footstool, or corner sofa – allowing you to

mattress topper wrapped around another foam pillow, allowing

seat (or sleep!) as many or as few people as

the option of both a softer mattress and a firmer pillow”

you like”

“Keep working until you’re happy all the details are as close to perfect as they can be, and the design comes together in a way which would otherwise not be possible” Training: Having previously lived in Italy

development of Alessia), and this work is

– where she spent a summer studying


20th century Italian design – and France, Adele moved to the UK from Canada in

Awards: In the second year of her degree,

2014 to complete a foundation year in

Adele won first place in G Plan’s sofa

design. She then returned to the UK to

design live brief, which opened the door

pursue a degree in Furniture & Product

to her work placement at Duresta. At New

Design at Nottingham Trent University,

Designers 2018, Alessia won the

from which she graduated with first-class

TalentLAB Award, and was the runner-up


for the John Lewis Award for Design and

Alongside these studies, Adele has spent


the last two years working as a junior designer at Duresta (which sponsored the

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FURNITURECOURIERS.COM “A business built by experienced removal staff ”

UK & European Furniture Deliveries Single Items To Dedicated Vehicles Furniture Unwrap & Assembly Service Specialist In Awkward Access Deliveries Offices / Depots

London - Birmingham - Manchester - Edinburgh Serving

UK, Ireland, France, Italy, Germany

0800 145 5056 WWW.FURNITURECOURIERS.COM FN354_Pages.indd 149 CompanyAssistJuly18.indd 1

24/08/2018 21/06/2018 16:03 10:01

150 | Designer

Know your rights! ACID’s chief executive, Dids Macdonald OBE, answers your design and intellectual property (IP) queries …

“It is important to try and retain all documentation that goes into the production of your product, in case it is needed at a later date”

UK design right was introduced to prevent copyright being asserted to protect industrial designs, such as spare parts, there is, in some limited circumstances, still an overlap between the rights. If a design is a work of artistic craftsmanship and/or a sculpture, then it could be protected by artistic copyright. Furthermore, its 3D shape and configuration could be protected by UK unregistered design right, and its overall appearance – including colours and materials – by Community Unregistered Design right. In

Each lodgement has a unique tamperproof number, and there is an option of downloading a certificate supported by the Police IP Unit. Being able to provide an audit trail to

those circumstances, the product could have up to three different rights subsisting. In addition, a product may be protected by UK design right for its shape, and copyright may apply to its surface patterns

2D or 3D designs is essential to prove IP

or decoration if they can exist independently

ownership. Designs rarely come to market

from their application to the 3D shape.

without refinements at various stages, and

An example could be the design of a

the more you provide this evidence the

mug (shape protected by design right)

stronger your design audit trail will be.

and the drawing of a cow that is applied to it (surface decoration which could exist

Is there an unregistered version of a trade

without being applied to the mug – in other


words, it could also be applied to a T-shirt

Yes. If you sell a product or service under a

or bag).

particular brand or get-up, then over time you could develop a goodwill and reputation in respect of that brand or get-up, so that the public will associate goods or services bearing those features as coming from a particular source and/or having particular Is it possible to take legal action relying on unregistered rights?

qualities. Customers will look to those features to

Yes. However, unregistered rights such as

help them differentiate different companies’

copyright and design rights only protect

products and be confident they are getting

against copyists, so if someone has produced

a certain quality. If somebody else then

a similar-looking product without copying,

begins using the same or a similar name

there is no case to answer.

or get-up for similar products, people

The burden is always on you to prove

could be confused into thinking that their

your case if relying on unregistered rights,

products are your products, or that you are

and that can include proving you did create

in business together.

the design you say has been copied, and

“A product may be protected by UK design right for its shape, and copyright may apply to its surface patterns or decoration”

In those circumstances, you may have

How can I ensure design protection in the US?

when. Therefore, it is important to try and

an action for what is known as ‘passing

The US does not have a design registration

retain all documentation that goes into the

off’. In the UK, if you are relying on

system as such, and it is necessary to apply

production of your product, in case it is

unregistered (trade mark) rights you may

for a ‘design patent’ in order to protect

needed at a later date.

use the symbol ™. This mustn’t be confused

3D wholly- or partly-functional designs.

with the symbol ®, which is for an official

According to the US Patent and Trade Mark

signed and dated so that a paper trail

trade mark granted by a national body – in

Office, “design patents may be granted

exists. This is where the ACID IP Databank

the case of the UK, this is the Intellectual

to anyone who invents a new, original,

is a very useful resource. Sending any

Property Office in Cardiff.

and ornamental design for an article of

Try to ensure this documentation is


copyright or design work to lodge it on the ACID IP Databank will mean that you have

Can a product contain both copyright and

Fees are expensive, and it is advisable to

independent evidence of the date it was

design right?

instruct a local agent to draft and file the


Potentially, yes. Although to some extent


Got an IP query for Dids? Email her on or visit to find out more about ACID (Anti Copying In Design), the UK’s leading design and IP campaigning organisation.

FN354_Pages.indd 150

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152 | Last Word

Paul Little Sales and marketing director, Relyon and Steinhoff UK Beds Working from manufacturing facilities in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, and Wellington, Somerset, Relyon and Steinhoff UK Beds manufacture beds under the Relyon, Dunlopillo, Slumberland and Myer’s brands.

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Last Word | 153

How did you enter the trade?

customers, suppliers and colleagues alike.

require a physical presence in stores for

I actually entered the trade by chance,

Running a large business means that I am

the feel and comfort tests, but given how

as I was headhunted to work at Relyon.

faced with daily complexities and challenges

much customers research – and, ultimately,

I received a phone call after being made

to ensure commercial development and

buying – has changed, understanding this

redundant at my previous job due to a

sales growth.

and evolving will be critical to success in the

takeover, and was offered a job at Relyon

Designing beds and driving new

selling beds. It honestly couldn’t have

innovation and better sales is always a

worked out any better, as I was very keen

constant but fun challenge of mine!

future. What company do you most look up to?

to get back into sales, and I haven’t looked

For me it’s Dyson. They’re such a forward-

back since!

thinking, progressive and innovative

Who was your inspiration? Ultimately, my family are my biggest inspiration. They’ve always supported me and made me determined to succeed. Also, I guess the thrill of the sale inspires me – being at the forefront of the business and being hooked by its never-ending challenges!

“The thrill of the sale inspires me – being at the forefront of the business and being hooked by its neverending challenges!”

company, and I really admire how just one man, Sir James Dyson, started the company with a problem-solving approach. The way Dyson are constantly evolving and entering new markets is incredibly impressive. What would you most like to change about yourself? To stop worrying so much - which is a hard thing to do when there’s always going to be

What was your career high point?

uncertainties around business! I’d also like

Without question, having dinner with His Royal Highness Prince Philip at a charity

If you had to start over, which career might

to have more of a work/life balance – but,

event at St James’s Palace. Steinhoff UK

you pursue?

then again, I love what I do!

were working in collaboration with the

I’ve had a love for the outdoors from an

British Heart Foundation, and it was just

early age – even right back when I was at

What do you enjoy most about working in

incredible listening to Prince Philip at 95

school – so if I could start again I think I’d

the trade?

years of age (at the time!) talk about being a

go into estate management or gamekeeping.

The people, without a doubt! From staff and

patron for a charity so close to my heart.

Being outside and active and getting paid for

customers to suppliers and competitors,

it would be a great way to earn a living!

people are at the core of our sector. I’ve worked in various sectors, but the bed

… and low point? Having spent three hours preparing a car

What date on the business calendar do you

industry is people-led like no other I have

in my early sales career, only to then watch

most look forward to?


a colleague reverse into it – as you can

The NBF Bed Show in September! There’s

imagine, absolute chaos and panic set in!

always such a buzz around new product

However, on the plus side, this taught me a

development, and it’s such a great

lesson – to always expect the unexpected.

opportunity to meet with all our customers,


suppliers, colleagues and competitors. … and the turning point?

In my entire career, I have not

A turning point for me was definitely

experienced such a close-working sector, in

being made sales and marketing director

which everyone gets along and respects each

at Steinhoff UK Beds and Relyon Ltd. It

other despite the commercial competition

brought the opportunity of working with

we all share.

a wider business network and, ultimately,

1994 - Wine shop manager 1996 – Car sales executive, Volvo 2000 – Field marketing manager, Cert 2003 – Business development manager,

being responsible for the sales and growth

What is the most important issue affecting

of such a large international group.

your business right now? How we grow and diversify as a business in

Blueheath 2006 – Key account manager, Relyon

Describe a typical working day …

an environment that is constantly changing.

2010 – Senior national account manager,

No day is ever the same – that would be

The entire world is becoming more digitally


dull! I enjoy that every day is varied, with

led, so it’s important for us not to fall

2014 – Sales and marketing director, Relyon

a combination of sales and marketing

behind technological advancements. We all

and Steinhoff UK Beds

functions, meeting new and existing

know that sales of mattresses will always

Comedy or mystery?

Skydive or bungee jump?

Rock or pop?

Comedy – laughter is what makes us tick

Neither, but, if I had to choose, a bungee

Rock, as it doesn’t all sound the same

jump, because it’s quicker!

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Furniture News #354  

In this month’s bumper issue, we’re looking closely at the role of bed-in-a-box brands in the UK marketplace, with discussion pieces from th...

Furniture News #354  

In this month’s bumper issue, we’re looking closely at the role of bed-in-a-box brands in the UK marketplace, with discussion pieces from th...